Get in on the March Madness spirit with this total-body workout that only requires one piece of equipment. You’ll get your heart pumping with a medicine ball and your bodyweight, as you shape and tone your booty, legs and core.
What you’ll need:
- Medicine ball (choose a weight that challenges you)
- Perform each move in each set for 45 seconds, and rest 15 seconds before proceeding to the move. Rest for 30 seconds between sets.
- Repeat the entire circuit for two rounds.
Lateral Leg Swings
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart, hands on your hips.
- Bring your right foot off the ground and, keeping your leg straight, swing your foot from right to left. The move should originate from the hip socket.
- Bring your foot out to the right, lifting it about a foot off the ground, then swing it over your standing foot as far as you can go.
- Repeat with your opposite leg.
Standing Knee Hugs
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
- Balancing on your left leg, draw your right knee up to your chest, placing both hands on your shin and pulling gently to hug it to your chest.
- Alternate legs.
Standing Glute Stretch
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart.
- Place your hands on your hips, bend your right knee and bring your right ankle to rest on top of your left knee. Sit back and down into your left hip until you feel a stretch in your right glute and hamstring.
- Hold for a few seconds, then return to stand and alternate legs.
Medicine-Ball Overhead Walking Lunges
- Stand tall, holding the medicine ball directly overhead with arms fully extended.
- Step your right foot forward into a lunge, then push through your right foot and bring your left foot forward to return to standing.
- Step forward with your left foot into a lunge and repeat. Alternate legs as you lunge and walk forward, holding the medicine ball overhead during the entire movement.
- Stand with feet wider than hips.
- Come down into a squat, then push through your heels to explode into the air. Let your arms swing back as you jump.
- Land softly in a squat and continue jumping and landing in a squat.
Medicine-Ball Plank Hold
- Begin on hands and knees with a medicine ball behind your feet.
- Place your toes on the ball and lift your hips to form a plank. Walk your hands forward or roll the ball back if necessary, so that your body forms a strong, straight line from head to heels.
Medicine-Ball Sumo Squats
- Stand with feet wide, toes turned slightly out.
- Holding the medicine ball straight out in front of you, lower into a sumo squat.
- When your knees are at 90 degrees, press through your feet to return to stand.
- Continue, keeping your arms extended to hold the medicine ball in front of you throughout the movement.
Medicine-Ball Running Butt Kicks
- Stand tall, holding the medicine ball at your chest, elbows bent.
- Run in place, drawing your heels up toward your butt.
Medicine-Ball Russian Twists
- Sit with your knees bent and heels resting on the floor. Hold the medicine ball in front of your chest.
- Engage your core and lean back, keeping the medicine ball to your chest and your back straight.
- Rotate through your trunk from side to side, keeping your spine tall. Your legs and lower body should remain still as you twist. You can tap the ball to the floor on each side, or hold it just off the ground.
- For an added challenge, bring your feet up to hover an inch or two off the ground as you twist.
Medicine-Ball Rotational Squat
- Stand with feet wider than hips, holding the medicine ball in front of your hips, arms fully extended.
- Lower into a squat, bringing the medicine ball down to one side.
- As you stand, draw the medicine ball up and diagonally across your chest and over your head to the opposite side, like a wood chop.
- Keep your arms straight and let your torso rotate as you swing the ball up and then down to your starting position.
- Repeat for 20 seconds, then switch sides.
Medicine-Ball Jumping Squat Jack X Hop
- Stand tall, holding the medicine ball at your chest with elbows bent.
- Jump down into a split lunge with right leg forward, then spring back up and land in a squat.
- Jump up from the squat back into a lunge, alternating legs so this time the left foot is out in front.
- Continue jumping from squat spring to split lunge, alternating legs as you do.
- Stay low to load your legs, and don’t lock your knees as you come up out of the lunges.
Medicine-Ball Core Reach
- Lie on your back, knees bent and feet flat on the floor, with the medicine ball between your feet.
- Engage your core and sit up, rotating your trunk and reaching your arms to the outside of your left knee.
- Lower yourself slowly to your starting position and repeat, rotating to reach to the outside of your right knee.
- Continue, alternating sides.
Medicine-Ball Hip Bridges
- Lie on your back, knees bent and feet flat on the floor, with the medicine ball on the floor in front of your feet. Place both feet on the medicine ball.
- Squeeze your glutes and lift your hips as high as possible, making a straight line from your shoulders to your knees.
- Lower your hips to the floor and repeat.
Standing Arabesque Reach
- Stand tall with the medicine ball in front of your hips with arms fully extended. Engage your core and shift your weight to your left leg.
- Hinge forward, keeping your hips and shoulders squared as you lift your right foot and leg straight behind you and extend the medicine ball forward.
- Bend your standing knee slightly for balance, as needed. Try to make a straight line from the medicine ball to your back foot.
- Lower your right foot and bring the medicine ball back to your hips, to return to standing. Repeat, alternating legs.
Medicine-Ball Reverse Crunch
- Lie on your back, with legs straight and the medicine ball directly over your chest, arms fully extended.
- Keeping your legs straight, engage your core and lift your feet up toward the ceiling. Try to lift your hips off the floor.
- Lower your hips and then your legs until your heels hover a few inches off the floor, and repeat.
- Sit with your legs extended straight out in front of you and your hands on the floor behind your hips.
- Draw your right knee toward your chest, and place your right foot on the floor outside of your left leg.
- Keeping your right hand on the floor for stability, twist to place your left elbow on the outside of your right knee. Press your elbow gently against your knee.
- Repeat on opposite side with opposite leg.
Prone Quad Stretch
- Lie on your stomach with your legs extended and hands next to each shoulder.
- Bend your right knee and reach back with your right hand to grasp your right foot. Keeping your knee on the floor, pull gently to stretch your quadriceps.
- Support your head and chest by keeping your left hand on the ground.
- Repeat on opposite leg.
Photo credit: jacoblund, Thinkstock
Video credit: Mark Kuroda, kurodastudios.com