Sometimes equipment options like a Bosu Ball can make exercises more effective. Find out how to do Bosu Ball V-ups and what they do.
Bosu Ball V-ups are simply a variation of regular V-ups where you sit on a Bosu Ball instead of the floor.
By using a Bosu Ball your abs and hip flexors are able to go through a bigger range of motion, the movement becomes more challenging in terms of balance, and you work your obliques a bit more.
The bigger range of motion in Bosu Ball V-ups is generally beneficial for training results. At least if the extra balance requirements do not mess with your resistance training workout.
Additionally, adding weights also becomes harder because of the extra balance requirements.
You also need to know that V-ups can be suboptimal for core training if you don’t do them the exact right way.
So while Bosu Ball V-ups can be effective, there are also alternatives that offer similar positive effects without balance requirements.
Something else to keep in mind is that some people will find Bosu Ball V-ups uncomfortable on their backs.
How to do a Bosu Ball V-up
With a good Bosu Ball, take the following steps to do a Bosu Ball V-up:
- Put the Bosu Ball with the flat part on the ground.
- Lie down on the Bosu Ball in a way where it is positioned against your lower back/butt. Keep your legs slightly less than stretched and your arms against your chest or above your head.
- Keep your legs slightly less than stretched and move them upward. At the same time, curl up your upper body starting with your shoulders. Time it so your body makes a V-shape at the top of the movement.
- Slowly lower your legs and upper body by reversing the previous step.
Bosu Ball V-ups are challenging in the sense that it is easy to use muscles different from the ones people typically want to focus on.
More specifically, if you want to focus on your ab muscles, you really want to pay attention to slowly moving your shoulders toward your hips during Bosu Ball V-ups.
This can be challenging because the momentum of your arms and legs can easily take over.
That aside, if you find Bosu Ball V-ups too challenging in terms of balance you can also put your hands on the sides of the Bosu Ball.
Bosu Ball V-ups muscles worked
The main muscles Bosu Ball V-ups work are your abs and hip flexors. You can also say this exercise works your obliques to a nice extent.
Additionally, your latissimus dorsi have to provide some force to move your arms forward.
As briefly mentioned, keep in mind that your abs are responsible for moving your shoulders to your hips and the other way around.
To grow and strengthen these muscles, you want to do Bosu Ball V-ups in a way where your abs do most of the work. Not the momentum of other body parts.
That aside, Bosu Ball V-ups make your abs and hip flexors go through a larger range of motion than the regular version. This is generally beneficial for training results.
On the flip side, Bosu Ball V-ups are also more challenging in terms of balance which can distract you from working your muscles optimally.
This is also the case because it becomes harder to move your hips in a controlled motion.
Lastly, the balance requirements of the Bosu Ball also make it harder to do weighted V-ups. This can be a downside for more advanced lifters.
Bosu Ball V-up benefits
Bosu Ball V-ups will often not be the number one choice in terms of effectiveness but they will often still offer benefits. Some examples of these are:
- Stronger muscles: Bosu Ball V-ups make it easier to work your abs and hip flexors to the extent where you get muscle growth and strength progress.
- Balance & coordination: The balance and coordination requirements of Bosu Ball V-ups can be a downside but it can also benefit your skills in these areas.
- Bigger range of motion: By putting a Bosu Ball below your hips, your abs and hip flexors are able to go through a larger range of motion. This tends to be good for training results.
- May prevent back pain: The ab strengthening from Bosu Ball V-ups can help prevent back pain (1, 2). People who already have issues in this area likely want to start with other movements.
- Can make your six-pack more visible: Growing your abs can make your six-pack more visible if your body fat percentage is low enough. Many people will find this a visual benefit.
If these benefits align with your training goals and you like doing Bosu Ball V-ups, you can try adding them to your workout routine.
Bosu Ball V-up alternatives
You could also conclude that Bosu Ball V-ups are not perfect for you.
In that case, there are a variety of other Bosu Ball core exercises and other movements you can consider. Some of these are:
- (Bosu Ball) Crunches
- Double crunches
- (Bosu Ball) Bird dogs
- (Bosu Ball) knee tucks
- (Bosu Ball) Russian twists
- (Bosu Ball) planks
Why you were interested in Bosu Ball V-ups and why you concluded that they are not for you will influence what alternatives are good choices.
Are Bosu Ball V-ups a good exercise?
Bosu Ball V-ups can be a good exercise for working your abs and hip flexors.
Thanks to the Bosu Ball, these muscles go through slightly larger range of motions which tends to be beneficial for training results.
Additionally, you get just a bit more oblique engagement than regular V-ups by using the Bosu Ball.
One downside of Bosu Ball V-ups you do want to keep in mind is that the balance requirements could interfere with your workout. Especially if you want to use extra weights.
On top of that, even regular V-ups are often suboptimal because it is so easy to use muscles different from the ones most people want to target.
In simpler words, Bosu Ball V-ups can be good if your balance and technique are good enough to do them right. Personal preference plays a role too.
However, most people want to choose one of the V-up alternatives and other exercises that are easier to do in an effective way.