Have you ever wondered why some athletes have great agility, never get hurt, and are deceptively stronger than they look?

The answer lies in the way the athlete trains! The secret to being able to have a lower risk of injury, the strength to move heavy objects, and the power to explode with force is through what I call, “Combo Training". To be a well rounded individual that lives an active and healthy life with minimal injuries, you must work the body from different training modalities. Combo training does just that, by adding 3 functional training elements: stability, strength, and power to your workout regimen.


Stability is the base for all other activities, which is a crucial factor for staying injury free. The majority of people train the bigger muscles which I call “the show muscles" while neglecting everything else; however it's important to train the stabilizers as they are the nuts and bolts that help to keep you steady and structurally strong during most movements.

Challenge all of the fine muscles that stabilize the body by using equipment that is unstable such as the BOSU Elite or TRX. Try incorporating exercises like the TRX Pulls (demonstrated below) to help incorporate stability, train multiple muscles at once , and build strength.


Strength starts with the core. Common misconception is that the core is “just your abs" (read more about functional core vs 6 pack abs ). Though the abdominal muscles and oblique muscles are part of the core, the spinal erectors, rhomdodis, trapexius, and gluteal connect to the axial spine make up a part of your core as well. In simple terms, if you were to remove your head, legs, and arms, the part remaining would be considered your core.

To train properly and develop “real" strength you must train the body as it was intended to be used. Most exercise and weight machines just aren't geared for that. Ideally, you need to be in a position where you are using your internal system (core) to support yourself instead of relying on external forces such as benches and machines with a backrest. Though there is a time where these applications are needed, it's important to not become solely dependent on them.

Pull-ups are a great core strengthening exercise because unlike using a lat pull down machine, you do not have something to support your legs when performing pull-ups. For a more advanced core exercise, you could also use a balance ball to bench press, where only your shoulders are on the ball and you have to become the bench by stabilizing your core.


Power is the ability to move weight with speed which produces force. In other words Power is the “icing on the cake" . Whether you are a weekend warrior, a parent carrying the children around, or an elite athlete, the ability to harness Power can truly enhance all aspects of your life. We are creatures that move, sometimes slowly, and sometimes quickly: We push, we pull, we run, we twist, and jump, and if we train in a way that allows us to master the use of Power in moving, we will truly be at our best.

Develop the ability to harness power and direct force through a variety of functional training equipment and practices such as: plyometrics, medicine balls, RMT Clubs, cables, and elastic resistance bands.


These movements are to be performed in sequence for 5 rounds. There is little to minimal rest between each movement, and you take a 1 min rest after you complete each 3 movement segments. Each exercise is to be performed for 10 reps, so pick a weight or resistance that will challenge you.

1) Push-up on a BOSU Elite with feet elevated. x10

2) Inline Dumbbell Press x10

3) Plyo push-up x10

REST 1 Min

1) Squats on BOSU Elite (dome side up) x10

2) Alternating Lunges x10

3) Skaters with a resistance band x10

REST 1 Min

1) Row with the TRX x10

2) Pull-ups x10

3) Ski pulls with a resistance band x10

REST 1 Min and Repeat from beginning

In summary, if you truly want to be at your best, you want to “Combo Train" by incorporating all three techniques into your workout routines.

About the Author: A childhood entrenched in athletics; a family abounding in the fitness industry and deep-seeded aspirations to help others shaped the man, John Hall, creator and owner of John Hall Studios. John realized early that his approach to health and fitness was unique in comparison to many he encountered. He turned his focus to inner conditioning, where he created the philosophy of training from the inside out. He looks to open locations in other US cities – further expanding on the John Hall Studios philosophy, and mounting the possibility to reach the lives of more and more Optimally Fit hopefuls.

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