Medicine ball exercises for kids is a great way to increase their muscle strength and injury resistance. Here are some exercises that are easy to perform, and useful too.
A medicine ball is a heavy ball (heavier than the normal soccer or basketball) that is used for strength training and rehabilitation. It is also called an exercise ball and is approximately 14″ in diameter and ranges between 2-25 lbs. It is very useful and effective when used for the plyometric weight training program. Most often, a medicine ball is confused with its larger counterpart, the exercise ball. Training with a medicine ball has been in practice since the ancient Greek and Persian era dating back nearly 3000 years.
Usually, medicine balls are used by boxing professionals for abdominal exercises. Today, medicine ball workouts are popular exercises performed by men, women and kids. These exercises are very easy to perform and practice for kids. They can play a vital role in their health and fitness.
These exercises are easy to grasp and give significant results as far as fitness is concerned. They are a great means to build muscle fitness and muscle strength. These exercises help to increase bone strength, enhance sports performance, heighten motor skills, and increase resistance to injuries.
Medicine ball exercises build the core strength of a child. They bring movements and stability to the core regions of the body, that is the abdomen, hips, lower back, and the spinal cord.
The exercises explained below are meant to be followed under proper supervision of either parents or the physical trainers. Before starting, it is very important to do some warm up exercises.
Stand upright and spread out your legs, keeping the feet shoulder-width apart. Hold the ball with both hands at chest level and extend your arms fully in front. Squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold this position for 2 to 5 seconds and then come back to the normal upright position. After learning this exercise, you can do several variations like pressing the ball above your head when squatting down.
Figure of Eight
For this exercise, you have to hold the medicine ball with your arms extended over your right shoulder. Then bring down the ball as if cutting down a tree, this motion will end near the opposite leg. This will require bending your knees in order to complete one motion. Stand up again and repeat the same procedure with the other pair (left shoulder-right leg). Repeat this figure of eight for 10 to 15 minutes.
Kneeling Push Up
For this exercise, you will need a partner standing at least five yards away to be able to grab the ball and return it to you. Your body must be in a steady and upright position with you sitting on your knees. Hold the medicine ball at the chest level, keep your torso steady and fall forward by throwing the ball towards your partner. It is very important to catch yourself on your hands like a kneeling push up, and push the body up.
Standing Russian Twist
For this exercise, stand by placing the feet about shoulder-width apart. Hold the ball at waist level, exactly behind the right hip and swing the ball at the same level towards the left one. Repeat the same moves in the opposite direction. During the movement, it is very important to keep the abdominal muscles as tight as possible. When the basic stage has been mastered, start with the variations like when you turn left, lift up the right heel and vice versa.
These are a few medicine ball exercises for kids that are very easy and effective for beginners. There are several other exercises like, seated triceps extension, sit-up pass, hammer throw, and crunches that can be performed once the kid masters the primary exercises. Also, it is very important to warm up and cool down at the start and the end of the exercise routine.