You’ve probably noticed we love medicine balls here at 12 Minute Athlete.
A simple medicine ball can help to make your workouts incredibly versatile. Wall balls are one of our favorite exercises you can do with it, but there are so many more!
If you don’t have a medicine ball, we really recommend you get one. They’re not super expensive, are easy to store at home, and once you get one you’ll have it for life. Of course, you can also substitute medicine balls for any ball-like object you have around like a basketball or soccer ball, but make sure to work even faster so that the overall intensity of the workout stays high.
Here are 7 of our favorite exercises you can do with a medicine ball:
Wall balls get your heart pumping quickly. They’re a full body exercise, where everything from your head to your toes is involved, but be ready to feel the burn in your quads!
How to do them: Stand about two feet from the wall, facing it. Make sure not to stand too far from the wall, because you want to toss the ball up, not forward.
Keeping the ball at your chest, do a full squat. Stand up explosively as you extend the arms and throw the ball high up against the wall. Catch it and repeat immediately. Don’t pause at any point of the movement— try to tie the squat, stand up, and arm extension together into one smooth movement.
Medicine Ball Slams
Medicine ball slams work your arms and shoulders, but also your core—just be sure to engage your abs to add even more power to this movement. Medicine ball slams are also a great way to help you let go of some stress and frustration!
How to do them: Stand with your feet about hip-width apart. Pick up the medicine ball, lift it overhead and slam it on the ground as hard as you possibly can. The louder the better!
Medicine ball squat thrusts are another full body exercise. They’re similar to wall balls, but because they’re quiet, you can do them without worrying about waking up your family or neighbors.
How to do them: Stand with your feet about hip-width apart. Hold the medicine ball at your chest, then do a full squat. Stand up explosively as you extend your arms overhead, then bring the ball back to your chest and repeat. Try not to pause at any point and tie all the movements together into one smooth motion.
Medicine Ball Twists
Medicine ball twists help you to strengthen your core muscles, and more specifically your obliques, the muscles on the sides of your belly.
How to do them: Sit down and hold the medicine ball in your hands. Lift your feet off the ground, then twist your torso to the right and let the medicine ball touch the ground. Immediately twist left and let the ball touch the ground on your left. Make sure to keep your core tight at all times.
To make this exercise a bit easier, try crossing your feet. If that’s too much as well, simply keep your feet on the ground.
Medicine ball squat throws are similar to wall balls, but you can do them without a wall. You’ll still get a full body workout.
How to do them: Stand with your feet about hip-width apart. Keep the ball at your chest and do a full squat. As you stand up, extend the arms and throw the ball up in the air. Don’t pause at any point of the movement—try to tie the squat, stand up, and arm extension together into one smooth movement.
Sit Up Wall Slams
Sit up wall slams work your arms, shoulders, and core, and also make you feel a bit like a badass.
How to do them: Sit down facing the wall. The distance of the wall will depend on the weight of your ball and how well it bounces back, so adjust as needed.
Hold the medicine ball in your hands, then lie down while keeping the ball at your chest. Do a sit up and as you come up, throw the ball against the wall. Catch it and immediately get back into your starting position and repeat.
Side to Side Slams
Medicine side to side slams help you strengthen your whole body, but especially work your arms, shoulders, and obliques.
How to do them:Stand up tall, pick the medicine ball up, and extend your arms overhead. Engage your core and powerfully throw the ball into the ground right next to your right foot. Catch the ball and toss the ball down right next to your left foot. Keep alternating sides, keeping your core tight the entire time and aiming for speed.
Try these exercises out in your workouts and let us know how you liked them. Happy training!
9 thoughts on “7 Exercises You Can Do With a Medicine Ball”
Can’t wait to try these on my own!
Give them a try Mark 🙂
seems to me that all are appropriate for tennis pro s players @ all levels.i personally have done most of them in alt training to keep fit!! ty john k uspta pro
That’s great John! Definitely good for tennis players too!
I have never used a medicine ball before. What would you suggest is a good weight for these exercises for a beginner with this equipment? I do use a 25lb kettlebell when I do those workouts if that makes a difference. So far that is the only workout I use equipment for on the 12 Minute Athlete app. I would think that would be too heavy for the medicine ball, but I could be wrong.
Hi Melissa! If you’re using 25 lbs kettlebell, 8-12 lbs medicine ball is probably right for you!
I just purchased an 8 pound ball but am worried I am starting too heavy.
Hi! Just found your article! Thank you for the videos and descriptions afterwards!!💜