Balance may seem secondary when it comes to getting that slammin' six-pack, but the truth is improving your stability actually goes a long way in strengthening and toning your whole body! If you are looking for some ways to tighten up that tummy and work on developing your equilibrium, check out these tried-and-true moves below.
1. Toy Soldier Stretch:
This total body stretch will improve your balance in no time. Start with your arms above your head, and as you lower one arm, kick the opposite leg up to meet it!
Step 1: Start with your feet hip-width apart and your arms straight above your head. Keep your back straight and your chest up.
Step 2: Kick your right leg upward while bring your left arm downward so that your right foot and left hand try to meet. Keep both your arms and legs straight.
Step 3: Return to the starting position and switch sides. You should preform this move quickly while maintaining proper form.prevnext
2. Samson Stretch:
Begin by reaching your arms over your head. Carefully step forward into a wide lunge, keeping your chest and back as straight as possible. If you tighten that core, you will really feel the burn!
Step 1: Interlace your fingers and raise them overhead so that your palms are facing the ceiling and your arms are squeezing your ears. Keep your feet hip-width apart, back straight and chest up.
Step 2: Stretch your hands up, and sink into a wide lunge lunge. Look up towards the ceiling. You should feel this stretch in your legs and your lower back. Maintain balance and hold for 3-5 seconds, repeat on other sideprevnext
3. Arabesque Taps:
Talk about a real tummy trimmer! This move will help improve your stability in no time. Lift one leg to a 90-degree angle and hold it tightly as you bend down to touch your toe!
Step 1: Begin with both feet shoulder width apart. Bring back your left leg into a 90-degree angle and hold with your left arm. You should be balancing on your right foot with your right arm directly out in front of you for balance.
Step 2: Slowly bend down like you are going to touch your toes bringing your right hand down to touch the floor. Bring your body back upright to the starting position. This is one rep. Repeat 10 reps and then switch to the other side.prevnext
4. Reverse Lunge with Front Kick:
Target those glutes, quads, and abs with this kickboxing favorite! Lunge backward, and then step forward and kick one leg to hip-height, making sure you don't lock out that knee. Be sure to engage your core for the best results!
Step 1: Stand tall with feet hip-width apart. Keeping your abs tight, step back with your right foot and lower into a reverse lunge.
Step 2: Squeeze your glutes as you push down through your left heel to return from the reverse lunge position, and continue the motion forward into a front kick with your right leg. That's one rep. Continue motion on this side for instructed amount of time, then repeat on your other side.prevnext
5. Single Leg Chair Sits:
You'll really work those core muscles with this move! Kick one leg out in front of you as you slowly lower yourself into a chair, making sure you keep those glute muscles engaged!
Step 1: Stand in front of your chair with feet hip-width apart, toes pointing forward. The chest is up and lifted while the shoulders are back and down. Turn on your core muscles now before you start to lower.
Step 2: Extend your arms out in front of you for good balance. Raise one leg up as high as you feel comfortable and send the hips back and down. Do not let the knee on your supporting leg come over your toes.
Step 3: Once your hips meet the chair, stay activated! Naturally, you'll want to relax and lean back, but you need to lean slightly forward while keeping the quad muscle tight. You should really feel the burn in that standing quad and glute.prevnext
6. Bosu Plank Tilts:
Strengthen your upper body and your core in no time with this move! Get into pushup position on an overturned Bosu ball and slowly tilt back and forth, keeping those core muscles sucked in against your spine.
Step 1: Grab a Bosu ball and turn it over. Get in push-up plank position with your hands resting on the turned over Bosu ball. Your hands should be positioned on the outside of the Bosu ball with fingers facing out and gripping the ball.
Step 2: Tilt the Bosu ball to the right while keeping proper form. Pause for a second, then tilt the ball to the left. Continue alternating sides each rep.prevnext
7. Front Kick:
Crank up the heat with this heart-pumping exercise! Extend one leg to hip-height and hold for three counts. Make sure you keep your spine straight and those abs nice and tight!
» Read more: Know Before You Go: Kickboxing 101prevnext
8. Single Leg Deadlift:
Deadlifts are a great way to hit the lower back, glutes, and thighs, but if you throw in a game-changer like lifting your leg, you've got the perfect move to improve your balance! Just kick that leg up as you lean down and touch the ground!
Step 1: Begin by grasping a dumbbell in each hand.
Step 2: Balance yourself on one leg, hinging just at the hips to lower the dumbbells and chest toward the ground, be sure to keep the abs in tight and the back straight.
Step 3: From this position, press into the heel of your standing leg to return back to standing position. Repeat on opposite leg.prevnext
9. Stability Ball Plank with Leg Lift:
Really engage your core with this ab-blaster! Come into a high plank on a stability ball and position your arms under your shoulders. Carefully lift one leg a couple inches as you hold your plank!
Step 1: Using a stability, come into your high plank with your feet and ankles resting firmly on the ball. Bring your feet together to create a center of gravity with the ball. Your shoulders should be over the wrists and your hips should be lined up with the body — not sagging or piked.
Step 2: Slowly lift one leg a few inches to a foot off the ball. Point through the feet to create length. Only go as high as you can while keeping your balance.prevnext
10. One Leg Squat:
If you are ready for a challenge, then give this move a go! Extend your arms and one leg in front of you as you squat down.
Step 1: Stand straight up with your arms extended in front of you, palms down.
Step 2: Lift your right leg and try to keep it as straight and tight as possible throughout the exercise..
Step 3: Bend your left leg and lower down into a squat as far as you can, keeping the weight in your heel and your back straight. Pause for a few seconds at the bottom of your move, then return to standing. Alternate legs for 60 seconds. It helps to pick a focal point and engage your core for proper balance.