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Get on the Ball: Backbend Crunches

I just discovered a great new exercise while lying on my yoga ball. This move will increase flexibility in your spine, but will also strengthen your abs. It doesn't take many reps before you start feeling the burn.

Grab a ball and

.

  • Lie on your back on a yoga ball. Shift your weight so it's evenly dispersed between your hands and your feet. Stay here for 30 seconds or so, just stretching the muscles in your back and abs.
  • Then as you inhale, shift weight forward toward your feet and use your abs to lift your torso up. Reach your arms out in front of you.
  • As you exhale, very slowly lower your spine back onto the ball and come into a backbend. Don't just let gravity lower you down, use your ab muscles so you can move with control. This counts as one rep.
  • Complete three sets of 10 to 12 reps.
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