Functional fitness, strength training and cardiovascular training along with HIIT are essential for athletes of all kinds especially us as firefighters.
Want to add an inexpensive tool to your fitness regime in the gym, at home, on the go and even in the firehouse? Then get on the Bosu Ball.
The Bosu Ball provides a versatile way for functional athletes to get in a full body workout, improve postural stability, as well as static and dynamic balance, thereby reducing the risk of falling. A key aspect to firefighters on the fire ground in many aspects of the job.
There’s multiple ways we can use the ball and multiple purposes for the ball.
Some purposes for the Bosu Ball are:
1. Balance training
4. Strength training
5. Core training
6. Kinesthetic awareness (an 7. awareness of how your body is positioned, which often declines with age)
8. Proprioception (sensing the relative position of neighboring parts of your body)
8. Increased endurance training
One way to use the ball is to keep the domed side up and utilize it much like a Swiss ball which can help with stability, stretching and performing core workouts.
Stretches especially for your calves can be performed by placing the domed side down and stepping on the rim of the platform.
Strength training exercises we can do include:
2. Squats with overhead press
3. Pushups and planks
4. Plyometric moves
Core exercises we can do include:
3. Side planks
A balanced body and a strong core are key areas with respect to functional fitness and us, the functional athlete. Between our PPE, SCBA all while performing hose advancements, searching rooms, forcible entry and overhaul just to name a few, our core strength dictates our performance, progress and capability to work more efficiently on the fire ground and in the firehouse.
Don’t be negligent to your body, physically and mentally because in the end you only have one.
Until next time; work hard, stay safe & live inspired.
About the Author
NICHOLAS J. HIGGINS is a firefighter with 16 years in the fire service in Piscataway, NJ as well as NJ State certified level 2 fire instructor and currently a State of New Jersey Advocate for the National Fallen Firefighter’s Foundation. A martial arts practitioner in Taekwondo, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Muay Thai as well as a former collegiate athlete in baseball, Nick is also a National Exercise & Sports Trainer Association Battle Ropes Instructor and studying for the Functional Fitness Instructor certification. He holds a B.S. in Accounting from Kean University and is the founder/contributor of the Firehouse Tribune website.