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Slam ball vs medicine ball – which one to go for and what’s the difference?

By James / August 6, 2017
slam ball vs medicine ball

When looking for a workout ball of some description you’ll likely come across a variety of different names and types of balls that to be honest all look the same.  So, are they the same?  Can slam balls be used as a medicine ball?  What about the other way round?  Here’s my guide to the different types available and I hope to answer the question slam ball vs medicine ball?

What’s the difference between a slam ball and a medicine ball?

The two main types of balls you’ll come across are slam balls and medicine balls.  Slam balls have been made popular due to cross fit, medicine balls are more of a classic training equipment and can be used by all levels of people.  They are similar, but the way they are used is slightly different.  It can also be really confusing when searching for them online as when you search for a slam ball, inevitably a medicine ball will come up!  Here’s a guide to some of the differences:

Slam ball:

  • Slam balls are to be used as the name implies – slamming against a wall or the floor
  • No bounce – slam balls shouldn’t bounce back at you
  • come in different weight gradations
  • the weight is in the centre and can move around a bit – it’s not even.
  • Generally softer


Medicine ball:

  • also come in different weight gradations – normally more variation than a slam ball
  • normally have good hand grip on the ball
  • evenly weighted
  • hard
  • can bounce – so not great for slamming!
  • for throwing, swinging and catching


Slam ball vs medicine ball – which one to go for?

When choosing between a slam ball or medicine ball you need to think about what you want to get from your workout.  They both do very different things and so can be used for very different workouts.

A slam ball is excellent for developing explosive strength, building up power and stamina.  There are many different exercise routines you can do with them but the main aim behind the slam ball is power training.

A medicine ball, on the other hand, is more of an all round workout, can be used for core and abdominal work and for doing a variety of different exercises.  I like that you can use the medicine ball with other people too.  You can slam a medicine ball, but due to the bounce this has to be done with care because you can certainly cause injuries to yourself or to someone else.


What about a wall ball?  Is that the same?

So, we’ve worked out the differences between the medicine ball and the slam ball, but what about the wall ball?  Is that like any of them?

A wall ball is slightly larger than both medicine and slam balls.  They are also softer and have a slight bounce to them.  Again, they come in different weights so you can go for a real heavy one or start off lighter.  So the main difference between it and a regular medicine ball is the size and the fact it’s normally made of a softer material.


About the author


I'm James and I've been a bit of a fitness and gym nut for the past few years. I have just recently become a qualified gym instructor and personal trainer. If I'm not washing my car I'll be in the gym!

Melissa - August 8, 2017

Do you use all three? I have to say I am guilty of using a medicine ball for all of the uses, but I do like a slam ball when one is available at the gym.

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