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Medicine Balls

Turn your next training session up a notch with a heavy medicine ball. Medicine balls are weighted balls, about the size of a basketball, which can help give added resistance to movements. They're big and heavy enough that you have to hold them with both hands, which means that any twisting or lifting you perform while holding a medicine ball will work your entire core. This makes these exercise balls great for building functional strength. Eventually, once you build up your muscles using medicine balls, you can even add kettlebells to your routine to take your workout to the next level.

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Build functional core strength with medicine balls from Kmart

Adding a medicine ball to your workout is a great way to spice things up in the gym. One of the great things about medicine balls is that they give you a safe way to add resistance to everyday movements; their soft, round exterior means they won't damage the floor if you accidentally drop them, the way a barbell or dumbbell might. Their safe nature, combined with the fact that they come in relatively lighter weights, make them useful in rehabilitating muscles and joints. Even if you aren't in any type of physical therapy, however, you can still make great use of a medicine ball to strengthen your shoulders, core, legs and more.

Medicine balls come in a range of weights; at Kmart, they range from less than five pounds up to 20 pounds. The weight you should choose will depend on which exercises or movements you plan to do; You can use medicine balls to add resistance to lunges, squats or even to your ab training. If your goal is to lose weight, choose a lighter weight and perform more repetitions to get a good fat-burning cardiovascular workout; if you want to build muscle, you'll need a heavier weight to build strength.

Medicine balls can give you a great way to make your workouts more fun and interesting. If you play basketball, why not practice chest passes with your teammates using a medicine ball? When you revert back to using a regular basketball, you'll find your passes are faster and crisper. If you have access to a fitness trampoline, try performing your trampoline routine with the added resistance of a medicine ball; just remember to stay safe.

While a medicine ball won't allow you to perform every exercise you want to do, such as bicep curls or leg curls, they make a great piece of supplemental equipment. If you have a home gym, a medicine ball will help add some variety to your routine; if you play a sport or work out at a gym, it will give you a great way to warm up, cool down or do a specialized core-strengthening routine.

When you're setting up a home gym, of course you need weights, benches and cardio machines. Don't forget the supplemental equipment though, like a jump rope and a medicine ball. This equipment helps give you a cross-training effect by varying your routine with new movements. At Kmart, you can find a variety of medicine balls from trusted brands like Body Solid, Prism Fitness and Everlast to complete your home gym.

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