The medicine ball is one of the most versatile exercise tools we have today. It looks pretty straightforward and we hardly hear about medicine ball injuries. However, before you incorporate this training aid to your workout routine, you have to be aware how it will affect your body and the potential hazards that come with it. Here are some safety tips that will help you get the most out of your medicine ball training:
Choose the Right Medicine Ball
Whenever you start a new exercise routine, it’s important to choose an exercise tool that will suit your fitness level. Medicine balls come in different sizes and weight- 2 pounds to over 25 pounds. It’s smarter to start with the lightest. You can always work your way up once you get accustomed to the weighted ball. Even if you can handle a 10-pound dumbbell or kettlebell it doesn’t mean that you won’t have any problems with a 10-pound medicine ball. Medicine balls can be tricky to handle so it’s a good idea to get a feel of how these weights differ from one another before you purchase one. The right weighted ball for you requires effort to hold but shouldn’t cause too much strain to keep it lifted.
Always Start Slow
Fitness experts do not recommend people who are new to exercise to start with medicine ball training right away. You need to improve your flexibility first and then move on to weight training with an emphasis on core strength. Once you are able to develop a stronger core that’s the time you can try medicine ball exercises. Don’t forget to warm up before you start training with a weighted ball. Start slowly and once you master the proper form and technique, you can increase your speed.
Don’t Hyperextend Your Spine
Many medicine ball exercises involve a throwing motion which means that you will toss the ball from behind the head. When doing this motion, avoid extending your spine too far as this may cause an injury to the back, spine, shoulders and neck. Make sure you know the proper technique in throwing the medicine ball from behind your head before you start.
Choose a Partner Wisely
Throwing the ball back and forth requires a partner. When choosing an exercise buddy, it’s important that you pick one with the same fitness goals. If you bring a couch potato to the gym, they may get tired too easily and this will prevent you from getting the most out of your workout. The best thing to do is find a partner who is used to handling a medicine ball so they can help you master the proper form and technique.