Medicine balls are mega diverse training tools. They can be incorporated into a training session to enhance the intensity and resistance of standard callisthenic exercises – burpees, pull-ups, sit-ups and the like – or they can form the core of the workout – with super-dynamic exercises such as squat-slams or wall throws.
The diversity of this spherical lump or rubbery lard can’t be overstated. But I’m going to try. Not only is the range of medicine ball exercises extensive (see the tip of the iceberg below) but they integrate excellently into most all types of training sessions.
Alternatively, a time-strapped trainer could easily get their cardio and muscle endurance fix with a 10-minute medicine ball slam AMRAP. Just set a countdown timer and merrily slam away until the sweat pours and muscles burn!
10 Best MB Exercises
1. Russian twist with a medicine ball - core
2. Reaching Romanian deadlift - legs
3. Rolling push-up - chest, back
4. Medicine ball thruster - legs, arms, shoulders
5. Wall ball - full body
6. Slam! - Whole body
7. Weighted superman - hamstrings, back, shoulders
8. Medicine ball HIIT routines - fitness, strength, mood
9. Wood chops – a bit of legs, core, lats
10. Lunge to twist – legs, core, shoulders
Choosing your medicine ball
Prior to purchasing yourself a ball you might want to consider how you plan to use it first. For this will be an indicator of the weight and ball style you should select – cus not all balls were created equal, if you didn’t know.
If you plan to engage your medicine ball in toning and conditioning exercises, which you’ll carefully perform in your air-conditioned home gym, then you perhaps would suit a light medicine ball (between 1 to 5 kilos) with integrated handles.
Integrated handles make the ball more suited to core rotational exercises such as the Russian twist or wood chop. Also, handles enable you to perform multi-functional exercises like medicine ball burpees into press-ups.
But if, by contrast, you’re a bit of a grunter with a gym in your garage or basement (which at a glance looks more like a scrap yard), you’d probably suit a heavy ball without handles – because they’re better to use when performing those ultra-macho exercises like slams, blasters (squat into slam (I made that name up by the way: blasters)) single arm shotputs and wall throws.
Okay then, now you’re clued-up on the manifold functional utility of the medicine ball, and you have an idea what weight and type of ball will best suit your training predilections, you’re ready for the product review.
A quick word on the review. As far as training equipment goes medicine balls are as simplistic as it gets. This of course makes reviewing the respective pros and cons of the product quite challenging. Consequently, instead of the usual waffle, each product comes accompanied with an overview and customer rating.
1: BodyRip No-Bounce Medicine Ball (£ prices vary depending on weight)
Very well rated – 5 stars after over 200 reviews.
BodyRip is one of the best sports equipment suppliers online. They offer high-quality and durable products.
This medicine ball is textured with a vinyl cover so as to enhance grip and durability.
The ‘no-bounce’ design makes the ball perfect for slamming on solid surfaces.
Highly durable material designed to withstand years of use and abuse.
2: 66fit Slam Balls (£ prices vary depending on weight)
Exceedingly well rated – 5 stars with over 400 reviews.
66fit slam balls are designed to be slammed into a wall or the floor.
They are constructed from highly durable materials which will ensure they last for years.
The no-bounce, impact absorbance design enables the user to build explosive strength as the ball can be mercilessly pounded into the floor without the fear of it bouncing back.
3: Trenas Professional Double Handle Medicine Ball (£ prices vary depending on weight)
Very well rated – nearly 5 stars with over 240 reviews.
This double handle medicine ball is part of the TRENAS PRO product line engineered for professional or commercial use.
They are built from high quality materials to exacting standards making them suitable for gyms, clubs, schools and home use.
The integrated handle design, which preference rotational and controlled movements, make this ball an exercise all-rounder.
4: Valkyrie Slam Ball (£ prices vary depending on weight)
4.5 stars after over 200 reviews.
Valkyrie’s slam balls are designed to be slammed into wall, floors and any other sold surface.
The industrial grade material will ensure that the ball withstands the rigours of years of training use.
The textured surface improves grip and reduces slippage making them ideal for explosive throwing exercises - such as the single arm shotput or blaster (squat into slam).
5: JLL® Medicine Balls (£ prices vary depending on weight)
Nearly 5 stars after 140 reviews.
JLL’s medicine balls are manufactured from high-quality, heavy-duty rubber.
They are designed to be used and abused, year in year out.
Built for elite level athletes but are perfect for the home gym.
FAQ – of the medicine balls featured
Do the balls come with a warranty?
Yes. All the balls comes with the standard manufacture warranty.
Are these medicine balls good for home use?
Absolutely! All the balls featured would make for a perfect addition to a home gym.
(As we are very interested in user experience here at Hungry4Fitness, we would be very grateful if you could take a few seconds out of your day to leave a comment. Thanks in advance!)
Adam Priest is a former Royal Marines Commando, personal trainer, lecturer, boxing and Thai boxing enthusiast.