Exercise Ball SI Joint Exercises
The SI joint, which is an abbreviation for sacroiliac joint, is one of two joints that connect the tailbone to the large pelvic bone. This area and the area around the sacrum is the main nerve center of the body, and the place from which much of our lower back pain stems, according to the website Pilates-Back-Joint-Exercise. Using an exercise ball, also known as a Swiss ball or versa ball, helps strengthen and stabilize the spine, strengthening the postural muscles and preventing SI joint pain.
The ball sit is a basic exercise for postural control and helps strengthen and stabilize the core and back muscles. Sit on the ball with your feet hip-width apart and flat on the floor. Slowly contract your abdominals, bring your shoulders back, and find a stable seated position on the ball. Hold this position, or slowly rotate your hips forward/backward and side-to-side, taking care to keep your body upright and abdominals contracted.
Prone Arm Opposite Leg Raise on Ball
The prone arm opposite leg raise both stretches and strengthens the area around the SI joint. Lie prone; that is, with your stomach on the ball. Your toes and fingers will touch the ground. Slowly raise your right arm and left leg until they are parallel to the ground. Hold for a few seconds, and alternate, lifting your left arm and right leg. Continue for 10 to 20 repetitions.
The ball bridge strengthens the lower back, glutes, hamstrings, and core, which are all areas essential to providing the proper postural alignment that can help prevent SI pain. Lie with your back on the floor. Place your feet hip-width apart on the ball so the soles of your feet are flat on the ball and your knees are bent. Slowly contract your glutes and hamstrings and lift your hips up off of the floor. Hold for a few seconds and slowly lower down.
Ball Wall Squat
The ball wall squat helps strengthen the entire core as well as your lower body without putting excessive pressure on your lower back or knees. Place the ball against a wall and lean against it with your lower back pressing into the ball. Bring your feet out in front of you to a place where they rest flat on the floor and hip width apart. Slowly press into the ball and lower down until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Rise up and repeat.
- Sports Injury Clinic: Swiss Ball Exercises
- Sekendiz B, Cuğ M, Korkusuz F. Effects of Swiss-ball core strength training on strength, endurance, flexibility, and balance in sedentary women. J Strength Cond Res. 2010;24(11):3032-40. doi:10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181d82e70
- Yu W, Cha S, Seo S. The effect of ball exercise on the balance ability of young adults. J Phys Ther Sci. 2017;29(12):2087-2089. doi:10.1589/jpts.29.2087
Chelsea Hanson began writing professionally in 2009. She is a personal trainer and running coach in Ann Arbor, Michigan, who has written for the website AnnArbor and worked in the health and fitness fields since 2002. Hanson has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Michigan and a Master of Arts in psychology from Michigan School of Professional Psychology.