A 20-Minute Stability-Ball Workout That's Way Harder Than Your Usual Ab Workout

When your core is strong enough to handle planks balancing on the floor, take your feet up on a stability ball.
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Do you have a stability ball collecting dust? If so, bring it out! An exercise ball is one of the most underestimated pieces of equipment, but it's fantastic for leveling up body-weight exercises.


Stability balls create instability during certain exercises, which forces your abs to work harder to brace your body. It can also increase your range of motion and even serve as a source of resistance if you lift it with your arms or legs.

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If it's been a while since you worked out with your Swiss ball — or you need a fresh ab workout to do — try the 20-minute stability ball workout below.

Check out more of our20-minute workouts here— we’ve got something for everyone.

1. Stability Ball In and Out

Sets 3
Time 1 Min
  1. Start in a high plank with shins resting on the ball and your hands planted on the ground below your shoulders.
  2. Raise your hips up as you bring your knees (and roll the ball) toward your chest. Make sure your hips don't dip as you bring your knees to your chest.
  3. Roll your knees back out so that you're in a plank.
  4. Continue rolling in and out — keeping your hips in alignment with the rest of your body — for 60 seconds.


For a more beginner-friendly move, stay still and hold a plank position. To advance this movement, you can roll in and out on one foot at a time.

2. Stability Ball Mountain Climber

Sets 3
Time 1 Min
  1. Start with your hands (or forearms) on the stability ball in a plank.
  2. Drive your knees toward your chest one at a time.
  3. Continue for 60 seconds.

3. Stability Ball Bird Dog

Sets 3
Time 1 Min
  1. Lie on your stomach on top of the ball, hands and feet supporting you on the floor so you don't roll around.
  2. Lift your right arm and left leg so that your hand and foot reach toward the ceiling without arching your back.
  3. Place your hand and leg back on the floor for support, then raise your left arm and right leg.
  4. Continue alternating sides for 60 seconds.


If you find yourself struggling with balancing on the wobbly ball, try lifting just one limb at a time — left arm, right arm, right leg, left leg.

4. Stability Ball Side Plank

Sets 3
Time 30 Sec
  1. Start kneeling with a stability ball on your right side.
  2. Lean to the right side and plant your right forearm on top of the ball. Keep your body in a straight line from your head to your hips to your knees.
  3. Bend your knees to 90 degrees and stack your feet behind you.
  4. Hold for 30 seconds on each side, keeping your hips lifted toward the ceiling.
  5. Doing both sides for 30 seconds counts as one set.


To progress this straighten your legs and balance on your forearm and feet, which will remain stacked on top of each other.

5. Stability Ball March

Sets 3
Time 1 Min
  1. Lie on your back on the ball, feet planted on the floor and knees bent to 90 degrees.
  2. Place your hands behind your head, elbows pointing out to the sides.
  3. One at a time, lift your right leg, then your left leg to march your feet, raising your knees toward the sky.


For a more beginner-friendly variation, lower your hips toward the ground. You can also substitute a hip thrust by planting your feet and raising your hips toward the ceiling, then lowering them back down toward the floor.

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