Medicine ball situps build strength but don't burn calories quickly.
Body-weight exercises are an effective way to get in shape without leaving your home. While most body-weight exercises don't require any equipment, adding resistance in the form of a medicine ball can increase the difficulty of exercises such as situps. Medicine ball situps, which you can perform on your own or with a partner, aren't known for their calorie burn. They are, however, an effective way to strengthen your muscles.
Boost the Challenge of Your Situp
For many people, situps are challenging in their own right. But for those who find situps to be easy, a medicine ball can quickly make the exercise challenging once again. If performing this exercise alone, holding a medicine ball against your chest increases the weight you must lift during each rep. If you have a partner, sit a few feet apart, point your feet toward each other, and as you lift your body, throw the medicine ball to your partner. Your partner should catch the ball in a seated position, lower her back to the floor and toss the ball back to you upon reaching the seated position.
A Slow Calorie Burn
Situps, with or without a medicine ball or partner, are an ideal way to strengthen your core muscles. As a strength-training exercise, they're an ineffective way to burn calories. The website HealthStatus reports a 160-pound person will burn 109 calories during 20 minutes of moderate-intensity situps and 195 calories during 20 minutes of vigorous-intensity situps. A person who weighs 190 pounds will burn 129 and 232 calories, respectively, during the same pair of workouts.
More Muscle Equals More Calories Burned
Although medicine ball situps shouldn't be the primary weapon in your weight-loss workout arsenal, they can play a supporting role as you exercise to lose weight. Situps are a way to strengthen not only your abdominal muscles, but also your hip flexors, obliques and several leg muscles. Adding muscle to your body elevates your basal metabolic rate, according to WeightLossResources.co.uk. The website notes regular strength training is enough to cause your body to burn more calories at rest.
Burning Calories in Other Ways
If your main goal of working out is to lose weight, medicine ball situps won't create enough of a calorie burn to help you find success. In addition to this core workout, fill your workout routine with one or more forms of aerobic exercise. Several aerobic workouts burn calories at enough of an elevated rate to help you create the calorie deficit that translates into weight loss. Exercises to consider include running, inline skating, cycling and swimming.