The 8 Best Pieces of Core Strength and Stability Gear

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A strong core is essential for protecting your spine and providing it with stability while still allowing enough mobility for you to move safely and without pain. Core strength helps to prevent and minimize injuries and enables you to bend, hinge, twist, reach, and throw.

Your core consists of all the muscles in your abdomen and back, and your glutes. Proper core training will address all of these components, helping you strengthen and stabilize your entire body.

Here, we've gathered the best core strength and stability gear to challenge your core.

Our Top Picks
An exercise ball is one of the most versatile pieces of equipment you can own.
The BOSU Ballast Ball adds a dynamic element to core workouts.
It pretty much works every muscle of the core and lower body.
Medicine balls are back and add an element of fun to your usual workout.
you can use it for a variety of exercises including cardio, strength, core work, balance, flexibility...the list goes on.
Often used for rehabbing injuries, the foam roller can be incorporated into a regular strength training routine.
Do exercises like biceps curls or overhead presses while balancing on it.
Great for the core and stabilizer muscles because they create tension throughout every part of your exercises.

SPRI Elite Xercise Balance Ball

SPRI exercise balls

An exercise ball is one of the most versatile pieces of equipment you can own. You can work every part of your body while improving strength, flexibility, balance and coordination. I love the SPRI exercise ball - It's the perfect thickness - Not too hard and not too soft.

Here's what you can do with it:

  • Use it during workouts - Use it as a weight bench, for ab exercises or flexibility exercises
  • Sit on it while you watch TV to keep your body and core engaged
  • Sit on it while you work on the computer for better posture

More about choosing the right exercise ball

Bosu Ballast Exercise Ball

BOSU Ballast Ball

The BOSU Ballast Ball adds a dynamic element to core workouts with the added weight of the ballast inside as well as the stability.

Basically, there's 'ballast' inside, a kind of bean baggy sort of material that keeps the ball from rolling but it also shifts and moves as you roll, toss and lift the ball during different exercises.

With the BOSU Ballast Ball, you can do a variety of exercises that will challenge your core, balance and stability.

Inversion Studios Pilates Ring

Pilates Ring

You don't have to hit a Pilates class or buy an expensive Pilates machine to get the core benefits.

This high-tension Pilates Ring is great for training the core muscles. You can squeeze it between the hands, for example, while doing crunches or you can squeeze it between the feet to work the lower body.

It pretty much works every muscle of the core and lower body.

AmazonBasics Medicine Ball

Medicine Ball

You may equate medicine balls with trauma-inducing P.E. classes from years ago, but they're a lot more fun now.

Medicine balls are back and, best of all, they add an element of fun to your usual workout. You can squeeze them, bounce them, toss them, swing them in circles...all of which will engage your core while working on balance, stamina and coordination.

You can do such a huge variety of exercises, this one is a great choice for any home gym.

Bosu Balance Trainer

People abs on BOSU

The BOSU Balance Trainer is one of my favorite tools for working the core and stabilizer muscles.

It's like a ball, but with a flat platform side so you can use it with the dome side up or down. I also like the BOSU because it's versatile - you can use it for a variety of exercises including cardio, strength, core work, balance, flexibility...the list goes on. This is a great choice for your home gym.

TriggerPoint GRID Foam Roller

Foam Roller

The foam roller may seem like an odd piece of exercise equipment but, believe it or not, you can improve balance, flexibility and strength with one.

Often used for rehabbing injuries, the foam roller can be incorporated into a regular strength training routine. Try lying on it while doing chest presses or crunches, or hold onto it for a challenge during pushups. You can even use a foam roller to massage tight muscles.

AppleRound Balance Disc

Balance cushion

Want a kinda fun way to strengthen your core?  Try getting one of these balance discs and sitting on it while you're at work.  Yes, you'll look funny wobbling around, but it's excellent for engaging your core.

You can also do tons of great balancing exercises - Stand on it, do exercises like biceps curls or overhead presses while balancing on it or even try balancing on one leg (keep a railing handy so you don't fall).  It also makes a nice pillow for floor exercises.

SPRI Xertube Resistance Bands

Resistance Bands

Resistance bands are great for the core and stabilizer muscles because they create tension throughout every part of your exercises.

You recruit more muscle fibers to keep good form and to keep the band moving on a smooth path.

Bands are inexpensive and they travel well, making them a great choice for a variety of purposes.  They don't take up any room and you can work your entire body.  I really love the SPRI brand of bands.  They last long and are great quality.

What to Look for in Core Strength and Stability Gear

Versatility

If you are interested in general core strength and stability, look for gear that you can use in various ways. This will help you target the entire core more effectively with several types of movements and exercises. Many pieces of core strength and stability gear, such as medicine balls, resistance bands, and foam rollers, can also be used for other body parts, increaseing their value. 

Effectiveness

There are many pieces of core strength and stability gear that do not live up to their promises. Choosing tried and true gear used in gyms and by personal trainers is a good idea. Avoid gimmicky equipment that can only be used for a single type of movement.

Specific Needs

If you have specific needs, such as rehabbing an injury, or a weak core, choose core strength and stability gear appropriate for your needs. For instance, balance discs can address fundamental core stability concerns. You can also select training-specific gear. For example, if you enjoy Pilates, choose a piece of equipment you can use during your classes.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why is core strength important?

    Your core is essential for many functional movements, helping you bend, hinge, twist, reach, and throw. A strong core provides stability and protection for your spine, which is very flexible and easily injured without the strength of the supportive function your core provides.

  • How long does it take to strengthen your core?

    How long it will take to strengthen your core is very individual and depends on your current fitness level. Each time you properly train your core, you can gain strength, and every workout counts when done effectively. If you are consistent, you can expect to see significant strength gains in as little as four weeks.

  • Why is stability important?

    Stability is important because it is essential for preventing injuries. If you want to bear any loads such as a barbell or grocery bags or even to safely climb a flight of stairs as you age, stability is vital. Stability allows your body to stiffen and brace while allowing for flexibility and mobility in your movements. Your core, including your back, sides, and glutes, needs to be able to stiffen and brace while you move your spine, or it may buckle or become strained and injured.

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3 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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  3. Brumitt J, Matheson JW, Meira EP. Core stabilization exercise prescription, part I. Sports Health. 2013;5(6):504-9. doi:10.1177/1941738113502451.