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8 Top Bosu Ball Exercises For Ankles

The Bosu Ball is a piece of fitness equipment that can be used in many types of workouts. What are some exercises you can do for your ankles?

You can describe the Bosu Ball as the top of a stability ball attached to a flat surface. This piece of equipment can be used in a variety of Bosu Ball exercises to train many fitness components.

One of the things where the Bosu Ball stands out is ankle rehabilitation and strengthening. Doing the Bosu Ball exercises below can help you with these things.

Remember that it is also still possible to overdo it. Start at an easy level and slowly progress as you get stronger. Especially in an ankle rehabilitation situation, you want to be careful and get guidance from an expert if needed.

1. Regular standing

To do the first and all the other ankle exercises on this list you will obviously need a good Bosu Ball. Once you have that, you simply put the Bosu Ball with the flat part on the ground and stand on it with your bare feet.

This first example is one of the easiest Bosu Ball exercises for your ankles and the first step for many others. The next exercises will also be harder but to make regular standing harder you can also shift your weight around a bit.

How to stand on a Bosu Ball

2. Squats

To do a Bosu Ball squat take the following steps:

  1. Put the Bosu Ball with the flat part on the ground on a steady surface. Stand in front of it.
  2. Put one foot on the Bosu Ball.
  3. Put your second foot on the Bosu Ball and move your feet to about shoulder width apart.
  4. Slowly lower your hips by bending your knees. How far depends on different factors like knee health but at your lowest point you ideally want your hips to be at or lower than your knee height. You will likely have to bend forward for balance.
  5. Push yourself up again into starting position by stretching your legs.

Bosu Ball squats can be done in two main ways. The version above with the flat part on the ground will be the least challenging when it comes to balance and the most challenging for your ankles.

As long as you don’t challenge your ankles too much this can mean more strengthening of your ankle muscles.

Make sure you give your body enough nutrients and rest outside of the Bosu Ball exercises to grow and strengthen the ankle muscles.

3. Calf raises

To do a Bosu Ball calf raise take the following steps:

  1. Put the Bosu Ball with the flat part on the ground.
  2. Stand up straight with the front of your feet on the highest part of the Bosu Ball.
  3. Slowly raise your heels as far as comfortable.
  4. Lower your heels back to the Bosu Ball in a controlled motion.

While this movement is a Bosu Ball calf exercise to some extent, to train your calves you typically have to use a lot of extra weight. This is not really an option with the balance requirements of the Bosu Ball version.

In practice, Bosu Ball calf raises will be more of a balance and ankle exercise.

How to do a Bosu standing calf raise

4. Side-to-side step-ups

To do Bosu Ball side-to-side step-ups take the following steps:

  1. Put a Bosu Ball with its flat side on the ground. Stand upright next to the ball with one shoulder towards it.
  2. Raise the foot closest to the Bosu Ball and put it on the farthest side of the ball. Make sure your sole is entirely on the surface of the round part.
  3. Raise your body by exerting pressure with the leg of the foot that is on the Bosu Ball.
  4. Put your second foot on the closest side of the Bosu Ball.
  5. Step down with the first foot on the ground on the opposite side of the starting position.
  6. Step down with the second foot.
  7. Repeat the same movement with the other leg first.

This Bosu Ball exercise is a great way to challenge your ankle muscles. You will implement ankle flexion, extension, pronation, and supination. In simple words, your ankles will have to move around a lot.

In turn, Bosu Ball side-to-side step-ups can help you strengthen your ankle muscles.

A nice bonus is that this movement is also a great Bosu Ball balance exercise.

How to do a Bosu side-to-side step-up

5. Lunges

For Bosu Ball lunges you generally put the Bosu Ball with the flat surface on the ground. After that, you can put the Bosu Ball under either your front or back foot.

To do a Bosu Ball lunge with your front foot on the ball take the following steps:

  1. Put the Bosu Ball with the flat part on the ground on a steady surface. Stand in front of it.
  2. Put one foot on the middle of the rounded part of the Bosu Ball. Put your other foot at a distance where you can achieve the desired angles in the next step. Horizontally speaking you want your feet to be about shoulder width apart or slightly wider for balance.
  3. Slowly lower your hips by bending your knees. How far depends on different factors like knee health but at your lowest point you ideally want both your front knee and your front thigh to your body at about 90-degree angles. You can use your arms for balance if needed.
  4. Push yourself up again into starting position by stretching your legs. Your front leg will likely carry most of the weight.

Lunges on the Bosu Ball can help you strengthen your legs, strengthen your ankles, and improve your balance. Make sure to do the same number of repetitions with each foot on the Bosu Ball to keep these fitness skills symmetrical.

How to do a Bosu Ball lunge

6. Standing on one leg

On a regular flat floor, standing on one leg is more challenging for your ankles than standing on two legs. The same concept applies to standing on the Bosu Ball.

Simply put it with its flat side on the ground and stand on it with one foot on the Bosu Ball.

Keep in mind that this exercise is also relatively challenging when it comes to balance. If needed you can do it while holding a wall, holding a chair, or using a partner or stick for balance.

Some people want even more of a challenge. In that case, doing a variety of arm and leg movements will make standing on one leg on the Bosu Ball harder. As an example, you can reach down towards your foot.

How to stand on a Bosu Ball with one leg

7. Toe raises

To do the next Bosu Ball exercise for your ankles you start standing on the round part with both of your feet. After that, you slowly raise the front part of your feet.

This movement is called ankle flexion and it is basically the opposite of what you do during calf raises. Both are great Bosu Ball exercises to strengthen your ankles.

How to do a Bosu Ball toe raise

8. Step-ups

To do a Bosu Ball step-up take the following steps:

  1. Put the Bosu Ball with the flat part on the ground. Stand upright in front of the ball facing toward it.
  2. Raise one foot and put it on the Bosu Ball. Make sure your sole is entirely on the surface but a bit on the side so you can stand in a balanced way in the next steps.
  3. Raise your body by exerting pressure with the leg of the foot that is on the Bosu Ball. Make sure the upper leg is doing most, preferably all, of the lifting.
  4. Put your second foot next to the other one.
  5. Step down with the first foot.
  6. Step down with the second foot.
  7. Do a repetition with the other foot first.

Regular Bosu Ball step-ups are a bit easier for both your ankles and balance compared to the sideways version. For ankle training beginners or individuals like seniors, this option may need to be mastered first.

How to do a Bosu Ball step-up
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Matt Claes

Matt Claes founded Weight Loss Made Practical to help people get in shape and stay there after losing 37 pounds and learning the best of the best about weight loss, health, and longevity for over 4 years. Over these years he has become an expert in nutrition, exercise, and other physical health aspects.

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