Fat Burning Exercises Using a Fitness Ball

About 34 million American adults are considered to be obese, according to the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. To control your weight, you need to find a balance between calories consumed and calories expended through exercise. One way to burn fat is to perform exercises on a fitness ball.

Dumbbell Fly with Crunch

To perform this exercise, hold a pair of dumbbells in your hands and lie face-up with your head and shoulders on the fitness ball and your feet planted on the floor. Your torso should be parallel to the floor. Raise the dumbbells over your chest with your arms stretched out to the ceiling and your palms facing together. Inhale and open your arms and chest, lowering the weights in a semicircle to the sides of your chest. Stop when the dumbbells have reached chest-height. You don’t want to let your arms go farther down than parallel to the floor. Exhale and raise the weights again, simultaneously curling your upper body off the ball and crunching your stomach muscles. Lower yourself back to the starting position. This combo-lifting exercise combines two movements to burn more fat. According to Jillian Michaels in “Making the Cut,” combo-lifting will elevate your heart rate and increase the calories burned because of the strain and fatigue of performing two exercises at one time.

Mountain Climber

The key to burning fat is to find a good balance between cardio and strength training. Using a fitness ball to perform the mountain climber exercise helps you accomplish both cardio and strength training by elevating your heart rate and building more muscle. Kneel in front of a fitness ball, facing away from the ball. Stretch your legs out backwards onto the ball so your body is in a full push up position. Make sure your arms are shoulder-width apart and your toes are on the exercise ball. Flex your stomach muscles so you stay balanced then lift your right knee off the ball and down to the ground, so your right knee is bent and the top of your left foot is on top of the ball. You should look like you are in a sprinter’s pose. Rapidly alternate your legs, pushing them on and off the ball. Time yourself for one minute to maximize your cardio workout. The fitness ball makes the exercise more challenging so you can burn more fat.

Prone Military Shoulder Press

Hold light dumbbells in your hands to begin and gradually build your weights. Lie face-down on the exercise ball with your lower abs and hips on the ball and your feet pressed against a wall. Straighten your spine, pull your shoulder blades back and tuck your chin. Hold your dumbbells at shoulder-height and then press them up and straight over your head. Keep your stomach muscles flexed and your butt muscles tight to support your back and stay balanced. Performing the press while engaging your stomach muscles and staying stabilized on the fitness ball will be more challenging, which will elevate your heart rate and burn more fat.

About this Author

Christina McDonald-Legg has written about health, wellness and travel since 1999. Her articles have appeared in “Colures Magazine,” (London) “The Sunday Times,” (Dublin) “The Connacht Tribune” (Galway) and “The Seattle Post Intelligencer.” Her articles have featured on websites for the U.K.\’s Department of Health and Expedia.co.uk. McDonald-Legg has a Master of Arts in journalism from the National University of Ireland.