Author: Giovanni Roselli
In lieu of the great feedback, comments, and inquiries from my last WeckMethod article, 5 Core Strengthening Exercises That Aren't Crunches or Sit-ups, I decided to give you all 4 more of my favorites!
1) Pallof Press Warding With Alternating Posterior Steps
My first article mentioned the Pallof Press, so consider this a progression for that movement. Since the Pallof Press has the main intention of resisting rotation, challenging the base of support by moving the feet while resisting rotation adds another layer of strength and stability.
First, try performing one Pallof Press, alternate the posterior step with each foot, then reset feet back to athletic stance. Bring your arms back into your body, and repeat, continuing for your desired rep range. This option of resetting after each rep allows for muscles to turn on and off, which is very overlooked, and allows you to concentrate on only one rep at a time.
Another progression would be not to reset each rep, and hold the Palloff Press out while continuing to alternate the step.
2) Rip Trainer Windmill
Sticking with the theme that most good core exercises also works the entire body, this drill meets that criterion as well. Similar to the Pallof Press where the force is being transmitted off one side, the difference is the challenging 360-degree circles.
This movement is one of those sneaky drills where it may not appear that challenging to the core, but find the right tension on the core, and you quickly become a believer. Additionally, the foot/ankle complex is working very hard to stabilize as well as the hip, in addition to a challenge to shoulder mobility and stability.
3) RMT Club Alternating Rainbow Arc
To build off of the Tall Kneeling ViPR rainbow in the first article, this drill using the RMT Club can create a little more of a metabolic challenge. Consider this motion similar to that of an exercise you can do with a landmine. This requires total core engagement, with a sudden stop to change directions. As we always remind you here at WeckMethod, make sure you switch hands to use both your dominant and Non-Dominant Side (Training).
4) Kettlebell Windmill
A staple in most kettlebell camps, and another exercise that gives you plenty of bang for your buck in regards to total body integration. There are many different variations, stances, and techniques so if new to windmills keep it simple and start with a low windmill (where the kettlebell is placed on the hand closer to the ground) and then progress to a high windmill (with the kettlebell placed in the hand reaching for the ceiling).
This is another example of resisting lateral flexion, which I spoke about in my first article, as the windmill should not be a side bend. The hips move in the frontal plane, the spine maintains length, and the shoulder has both the mobility and stability to maintain positional integrity. An excellent exercise to cover all of that, plus of course those abdominal muscles and obliques.
We are now up to 9 core drills that aren't sit-ups and crunches. The advisory as with all fitness routines is having the prerequisite standards to attempt these drills (i.e. do not perform the high windmill variation if you lack shoulder mobility).
About the Author: Giovanni Roselli is a Nike Master Trainer. Most recently, he created the Equinox national signature group fitness class 'Fully Loaded.' Additionally, he is a master instructor for ViPR, Animal Flow, and Progressive Bodyweight Training, as well as being a master kettle bell instructor for Kettlebell Athletics. He holds a nutrition certification with industry leader Precision Nutrition. He writes regular articles for PTontheNet as well as David Weck's WeckMethod website, Dr. Jeffrey Morrison's Morrison Health website, and NY/CT lifestyle magazine WAG. His television appearances include NBC's 'Today Show' and National Geographic's 'Brain Games.'