If you’ve never used a medicine ball for your workout then you’re missing out. Medicine balls are particularly useful for explosive movements, and there’s no better exercise for relieving stress in the gym than the medicine ball slam, where you hurl one into the ground as hard as possible.

You can’t do that with a dumbbell, unless your gym is really very laid-back about the state of its floors.

They’re also great for core exercises and moves where you put your body in an unstable position to challenge your balance. The workout below is a mix of explosive exercises and core moves. And we promise after one round of this workout, you’ll never doubt the effectiveness of the medicine ball again.

Lunge with rotation:

Works: Quads, glutes, core, shoulders and hamstrings

How to:

  • Grab a weighted ball and stand with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Lift the ball up to your shoulders, arms extended in front.
  • Step your right leg forwards into a lunge, thigh parallel to the floor, then twist from your waist to the right.
  • Pushing into your right heel, stand up and return the ball to the centre.
  • Repeat with your left leg, twisting to the left, to complete one rep.

Related article: Mix Up Your Core Workout With These 5 Exercises That Hit Every Angle Of The Abs


Works: Quads, glutes, abs, shoulders and upper back

How to:

  • Stand with your feet just beyond shoulder-width apart.
  • With your arms nearly straight and holding the ball above your head, turn to your right from your waist.
  • With a single chopping action, swing the ball down to your left side as you bend your legs.
  • Quickly reverse the movement with the same intensity and return to the starting position, to repeat on the other side.

Related article: Your Yoga Cool-Down Routine To Compliment Your Workout Efforts

Press-up and roll:

Works: Shoulders, biceps, triceps and core

How to:

  • Begin in a plank position with your right hand on top of the medicine ball and left hand on the floor.
  • Hands are directly below shoulders with arms straight.
  • Lower your chest towards the floor, bending your elbows and keeping your body straight. (If this is too difficult, bend your knees and place them on the ground.)
  • Press up to the start position, then roll the ball over to the other side and repeat the push-up with the ball under your left hand.

Related article: Gain Total-Body Strength With These 17 Push-Up Variations

Russian twist:

Works: Core muscles

How to:

  • Begin in a seated position with your knees bent and feet off the floor, holding a medicine ball in front of your chest.
  • Twist the ball to your right hip bone, keeping your body centred (B), then twist the ball to your left.
  • Continue to twist back and forth while keeping your feet off the floor and core tight.