You can use Bosu Balls in a variety of ways and movements. Find out how to do Bosu Ball back extensions and whether they are good.
They are called Bosu Ball back extensions but in reality, they will be more of a Bosu superman exercise due to the relatively small range of motion.
That aside, Bosu Ball back extensions can help resistance training beginners strengthen their erector spinae (lower back muscles) and to a tiny extent glute (butt) and hamstring (back thigh) muscles.
Two potential downsides of Bosu Ball back extensions are that they are somewhat easy to do and hard to make more challenging.
This will make them more of a muscle endurance exercise and for more experienced lifters, potentially not even that.
If you want a bigger range of motion, the ability to hold extra weights, and in turn a more effective workout, you can also give exercise ball back extensions a try or even better, the same exercise on a back extension machine.
Additionally, there are other exercise alternatives that are more effective than Bosu Ball back extensions.
How to do a Bosu Ball back extension
With a good Bosu Ball, take the following steps to do a Bosu Ball back extension:
- Put the Bosu Ball with the flat part on the ground.
- Lie down with your hips/stomach on the top part of the Bosu Ball but adjust for balance and comfort. Keep your legs stretched and your arms by your sides. Let your shoulders and legs hang down for now.
- Slowly raise your shoulders as far as comfortable or until your body is in a straight line from your knees to the top of your head.
- Lower your shoulders back to the ground in a controlled motion.
You want to keep in mind that some people will find raising their shoulders too much in Bosu Ball back extensions uncomfortable.
Because of this, it can be smart to do your first few Bosu Ball back extensions slowly. This can help you find out what your body can deal with.
Bosu Ball back extension muscles worked
The main muscles Bosu Ball back extensions work are your erector spinae (lower back) muscles. You can also say your glutes (butt) and hamstrings (back thighs) have to work to some extent.
As briefly mentioned, this movement resembles the superman exercise more.
By adding a Bosu Ball you slightly increase the range of motion of your lower back muscles. This is generally helpful for growing and strengthening these.
In regular back extensions, the focus will be a lot more on the glute and hamstring muscles because your feet are anchored and you have more room to move.
One important thing to note is that the erector spinae, glutes, and hamstrings are relatively strong muscles.
To actually grow and strengthen these, you likely need to do exercises with a lot of resistance.
A downside of Bosu Ball back extensions is that it is not really possible to add weights effectively. This makes it more of a muscle endurance exercise for resistance training beginners.
More experienced lifters may even not see that much improvement in muscle endurance from Bosu Ball back extensions.
Bosu Ball back extension benefits
Bosu Ball back extensions are likely not the most effective exercise option available to you.
That being said, this movement will still offer you a few positive effects similar to the benefits of regular back extensions but to a smaller effect.
A few examples are:
- Better muscle endurance: Even if they don’t help you grow these muscles, improving your muscle endurance with Bosu Ball back extensions can be valuable.
- May reduce or prevent back pain: One of these benefits of better lower back muscle endurance is that it can help you reduce or prevent pain in this area. (1, 2).
- Could make daily activities easier: Better lower back muscle endurance can make daily activities like standing, sitting, and walking around more convenient.
Even if there are more effective options, it is nice to know that adding Bosu Ball back extensions to your exercise routine can offer these valuable benefits.
Bosu Ball back extension alternatives
By now, you likely want to know what some of these more effective Bosu ball back extension alternatives are. A few examples include:
- Good morning exercise
- (Romanian) Deadlift
- (Bosu Ball) Bird dog
- (Bosu Ball) Hip thrusts
- (Bosu Ball) Reverse planks
What muscles you want to work in what ways and with what equipment will influence your decision between these Bosu Ball back extension alternatives a lot.
Are Bosu Ball back extensions a good exercise?
Bosu Ball back extensions can offer resistance training beginners nice improvements in lower back muscle endurance.
It is fair to say that adding the Bosu Ball will be just a bit more effective than doing the regular superman exercise on the floor.
That being said, it is also hard to really say Bosu Ball back extensions are a good exercise with the convenient alternatives available.
In simpler words, Bosu Ball back extensions can offer nice benefits but there are also back extension alternatives that are more effective.
If you like doing these just as much, you may as well do them instead.
On the flip side, resistance training beginners who find Bosu Ball back extensions more enjoyable can still do this exercise too.