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I love the Bosu!

bosu.jpg  For those of you who have never set foot inside a gym, you’re possibly wondering “What’s a Bosu?”. Frankly, there are probably some regular gym junkies who don’t know either.

Bosu stands for “BOth Sides Up” or “BOth Sides Used”. It looks like half a fitball. They usually have a blue, rubbery top and a black, hard plastic base. As the name suggests, either side could function as the base. Most people stand on them to perform exercises.

“What’s the point of standing on a Bosu?” you may ask. Well, performing exercises on an unstable base promotes the use of those all-important core muscles. 

Often core stability exercises appear to focus on abdominal exercises. While abdominal muscles do from a crucial part in core stability, doing lots of sit-ups won’t give you core stability. So, you don’t need rippling abs to have stability.

I like to think of core stability as awakening deep muscles in the abdominal and adjacent regions. Once we get these muscles “firing” regularly, they provide support for other exercises ( e.g. weights), and IMPROVE OUR ABILITY TO REACT TO SURPRISE EVENTS. 

Don’t be frightened of the Bosu. If you’re in a gym get a staff member to help you. That’s why they’re there. To begin with practice standing on the blue surface with both feet. Some people find it helpful to perform these exercises in front of a mirror. Try and keep your head still to maintain balance. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you perfect this skill.

Once you’re comfortable standing on the Bosu, start playing around with it. Try performing a squat. Try standing on one leg. Stand on the Bosu while performing bicep curls. ALWAYS MAKE SURE YOU HAVE PLENTY OF ROOM AROUND YOU SO YOU DON’T HIT YOUR HEAD ON SOMETHING IF YOU HAPPEN TO FALL OFF!

Now that you’ve mastered standing on the blue, rubbery surface turn it over and try all of these exercises standing on the hard, black surface.