The first thing to say about slam balls is that unlike most other balls that you have ever played with, these don’t bounce! The come in different weight bands to add to the difficulty of the exercise you are doing. They start at 2kg in weight and rise up to 50kg.
They are great for explosive power work and for developing virtually every muscle group in the body. They can be used in place of free weights but can also be used in a more dynamic way, they allow for plyometric training, for the development of explosive power.
They are popular not just for your home gym but also to use in circuit training and boot camps, indoors and outdoors.
They are both weighted balls, in weights from 2lbs to 50lbs, they can both be added to exercise like squats to make then harder and you can use both of them to workout with a partner. The real difference is that the slam ball is really made for throwing or slamming hence its name! Its hard shell allows it to be slammed down hard against a hard surface. Medicine balls by comparison are not as hard on the outside tending to be made of leather, rubber or plastic.
The most common exercise is the ball slam which works the shoulders, triceps, abdominals, quads, glutes, claves and back. You stand with the ball above your head and throw the ball with as much force as you can toward the ground a little bit in front of you. This exercise relies on explosive muscle power to generate a quick movement. Keep repeating this exercise, it’s also great to relieve stress and aggression.
Once you have mastered the basic slam ball movement then it’s time to add to the intensity. You can do this by increasing the weight of the ball. After this you could add a time element by doing for example, as many slams as you can in say 5 minutes. You can also vary the slam, try a one armed slam and even a side slam.
You can also use a slam ball in your ab workout by doing a sit up with feet 6 to 12 inches from a wall. Holding a slam ball at chest level toss the ball against the wall whilst you are sitting up, catch the ball, then return to the floor. This will work out your chest, abs, back and arms.
Do check that your slam ball is made of the most durable material, that it has a good level of warranty, that the diameter is right for you.
If you're able to, check that it does not bounce and also check that it is suitable for the surface you want to slam it on.