Squats with Exercise Balls

exercise balls squatsExercise or stability balls offer a fantastic alternative to traditional squats, and can really help to tone and strengthen your butt and legs quickly. Your legs help you balance while at the same time getting a pure strength workout from the squats, thus enjoying a one-two punch which works quickly to tighten up your lower half.

Because stability ball exercises offer so much flexibility, they can be done almost anywhere, with or without weights or other equipment. You can work one or both legs in variety of positions.

Here are two of the most effective stability ball squat exercises:

Exercise Ball Wall Squat

Stand with an exercise (stability) ball against your back, between you and wall (as pictured). When you feel balanced, tuck in your abs and begin to squat until your legs are parallel to the floor. Do not go any deeper as this may hurt your knees. Focusing on keeping your buttocks and thighs contracted, push slowly back up to the starting position.

BONUS: Add hand weights and/or try it with one foot off the ground, both pictured above.

One-Legged Squat

Stand to one side of a stability ball. Carefully place one foot on the ball while the other foot remains firmly on the floor. When you feel well balanced, begin to squat with the standing leg until you reach one quarter of the way down, keeping the other leg still and stable on the exercise ball. All the work should be done by your standing/squatting leg, and your upper body and core muscles should be held tight and upright.