Sculpt, Balance & Burn with BOSU

By: Tami Charbonnet | Model: Amber Berry | Photographer: Richard Vallon

The BOSU® Pro Balance Trainer is a rather peculiar looking tool, but its seemingly odd design delivers fantastic results, using only your body weight and the ability to fight the natural force of gravity. Many trainers use it to create full-body workouts that: 

  1. are safe and gentle, yet challenging
  2. carve the core and strengthen the lower body
  3. help tone and sculpt every major muscle group

Forcing you to tap into the deep muscle of the core, the BOSU is similar to a stability ball, but designed with a flat bottom. The inflated “bubble” side of the BOSU allows you to sit, stand, lie, kneel, or even jump. With the platform side up, you can do push-ups, planks or stand on it for an advanced balance workout.  

Any exercise done on the ground can also be performed on the BOSU.
The BOSU is challenging and fun for every level of fitness. These beginner BOSU exercises will allow you to reap the benefits from this brilliantly designed tool.

1. BOSU Squat:

  • Stand on the side of the BOSU.
  • Step the left foot on top toward the center of the “bubble.”
  • If your balance is compromised, be sure to stand next to a wall for stability. Reach the arms out straight at shoulder height and parallel to the floor. 
  • With toes pointed forward, gently bend the knees and drop the backside into a squat.
  • Brace the core tightly as you squat and then release to standing. 
  • Try to complete 3 sets of 15 slow and steady repetitions.

2.  BOSU Power Lunge

  • With eyes forward, place one foot in front onto the center of the BOSU.
  • With feet shoulder width apart, the front foot should be forward enough that the knee does not extend over the ankle as you lunge downward.
  • Bend the front leg and bring the hips towards the ground. Do not lean forward.
  • Your back leg on the floor should bend slightly until the knee almost touches the floor.
  • As you bend your front knee, your thigh and lower leg of the back leg should form a right angle.
  • If this is too difficult, bend the knees slightly until you are strong enough to go deeper into the lunge. 
  • Do not let the front knee extend over your ankle and foot and be sure to keep your back and neck straight.
  • Before you exhale, pause briefly.
  • Slowly lift the body by straightening the front leg.
  • Complete a full set with one leg and switch legs when the set is completed. You can also add a weight in each hand for an added resistance.

3. BOSU Dome Plank

  • Place your forearms on the very top of the dome or bubble. Brace the core tightly. 
  • Lengthen both legs so the body is in the plank position. 
  • Hold this position: Make sure to keep your core drawn in and your glutes contracted. Your back must not arch.  
  • Bring the knees to the floor for an easier option.

4. BOSU Flat Plank

  • With your hands holding onto the sides of the BOSU, dome side-down, brace the core and get into full plank position. Option: Lower down into a push-up position, hovering your chest off the BOSU.  
  • Keep your abs tight and core engaged, press back up to your plank position.
  • You can make easier by performing these on your knees.

5. BOSU Modified Side Plank

  • Rest the right forearm on top of the dome.
  • Bend the right knee and lengthen the left leg into a side-plank position.
  • Keep your shoulders over your elbows. 
  • Your body should be in a straight line from the head to the heels.
  • Tighten the abdominal muscles and pull in toward your spine, and squeeze your gluteal. Hold for 30 seconds to one minute.

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