This is an exercise we absolutely love. It’s a great way to maximally contract your core muscles against a resistance without moving from proper spine posture. Check out the video for the dead bug and bulleted points to ensure you’re maximizing benefits and minimizing risks!
- Start on your back, and before grabbing the exercise ball, activate your core with pushing out your obliques and taking a quick breath of air in.
- Next, grab the ball with all fours and be sure to maintain a neutral spine curve in your lumbar spine (low back) while holding the ball.
- From here, hold the ball tightly and build up tension to squeeze as hard as possible.
- Alternate using opposite arms and legs to slowly lower to the ground, while maintaining tension in the ball with just two limbs. Maintain the neutral lumbar spine position.
- Be sure to breathe slowly in while lowering the limbs, and breathe out when bringing the arm and leg back to the ball.
This is an exercise everyone should be doing (with appropriate modifications for select populations) regularly. It engages several upper and lower extremity muscles and stabilizes the pelvis (core and postural training), while developing and promoting proper movement and mobility through the joints. It also promotes strengthening the core without increasing the stress on the spine or the discs.