Today, in my at-home exercise series, Jennifer Nyp from Zen Girl Fitness explains what the hell to do with a BOSU, which is a lot more than you think! I actually did Jen’s BOSU workout this morning and to be totally honest, it was TOUGH. I felt like many of the exercises were so challenging that I couldn’t do them correctly. But, I reminded myself that I didn’t feel like I was doing half the exercises in her gym correctly either. Jen says challenging your body to do new exercises accomplishes even more than doing a move to perfection. That would be when it’s time to try something else. Anyway, at the end of the workout, my heart was pumping, I was sweating profusely and I fell back onto the couch in a heap. I call that a successful workout. I’ll let Jen take it from here!
The BOSU is one of the first things my children run to when they visit my studio. I let them play on it with the flat side down. Letting your children see you exercising and participate in their own fun way is one of the best things you can do for your family. I feel like my children don’t listen to what I say as much as they observe my habits. That’s one of the main reasons I recommend this piece of equipment for home use— it’s safe and user friendly for all ages.
BOSU stands for “Both Sides Up or Utilized” and I use it for both beginner and advanced clients. It is mostly beneficial for balance and core strength, but is also known for it’s ability to aid in rehabilitating lower body injuries like knees. Just remember all the same rules apply on the BOSU as do the floor (i.e. knees at 90 degrees in a squat).
Start with the standing exercises to warm up, then move into the plank moves and finally finish on your back with the V Sit up. When you get familiar with the exercises, you can mix the order up or even reverse them all together. As with all of the equipment and moves in this workout series, you can combine equipment. For example, add the versa loop around your ankles for the BOSU burpees. Be creative and always, always, increase the difficulty when your body adapts. But most of all, HAVE FUN!
12 WAYS TO USE A BOSU IN YOUR WORKOUT:
Move #1: 360 Tap Warm-up
You can start any BOSU series with this simple warm-up!
Move #2: Single Leg Squat and Jump
This move is pretty simple so work on really controlling the movement
Move #3: Plyo-jump into Squat
This is a great warm-up or interval move. Weave this and the burpee in with a mix of the other exercises for great cardio and a calorie burn boost!
Move #4: Plank Knee Twist
This is a total body workout. It works your core, arms, back, butt… everything!
Move #5: Side Plank and Hip Lift
Plug into your back, tuck your pelvis to protect your lower back and keep going until you lose good form.
Move #6: Burpees
The bouncy kind! Jump with as much force as you can but land with as little impact as possible. Do 2-3 sets of either 10-20 reps or 30-90 seconds.
Move #7: Side-to-sides with Squats
This is all about the booty and core!
Move #8: Push-ups and Mountain Climbers
Make sure your shoulders are directly over your wrists. Try to keep the BOSU as still as possible. Try doing 2-3 sets of 20 reps or 30-60 seconds.
Move #9: Birddog
This might look easy but it definitely isn’t. You can add a hand weight in the hand and/or ankle weights to make it more difficult. Do 2-3 sets of 10-15 on each side!
Move #10: Jump Up with a Balance Challenge
Combines a floor and core exercise for a compound movement. Do sets of 10-30 or time it for 30-90 seconds.
Move#11: Squat into Push-up/Push-off
Be sure to start and finish on your heels. Don’t put any weight on your knees. This is very challenging to do correctly for a long time. Start with 30 seconds and work you way up to 90 seconds.
Move #12: V Sit Up
This move is kind of like a teaser on the BOSU. Super hard to control. Start with your feet on the floor first, then maybe one at a time and then both off. Go slow. Exhale as you bend your knees to your chest.
Stay tuned for next week when Jen will teach us how to incorporate another piece from her list of recommended home gym equipment which you can find here.
You can follow Jennifer Nyp on Instagram at @zengirlfitness for more daily exercise ideas or if you live in Manhattan and want to work out with her private SOHO studio, you find her contact info here.