It is a conversation that I have to have with our DVRT Master Instructors quite often. That is because when you look at strength training so differently than everyone else, what you share may be viewed as crazy or silly. I get it because human nature is to reject things that don’t fit into our current mindsets. The only downside is that often these ideas are REALLY good and we just have to explain them a bit more! So, what are 3 examples of Ultimate Sandbag exercises that seem silly but are incredibly powerful?
#1 Press Outs
One of the simplest DVRT Ultimate Sandbag exercises, is also one of the most misunderstood! The point of a Press Out isn’t to work the chest or be a standing chest press. After all, gravity still goes down so that idea wouldn’t work so well!
The goal of Press Outs is…..
-Create a Plank: When we Press Out from the bellybutton we are engaging the lats that will help us brace the core. This is just like what we do in a plank. When we plank we create stability for more dynamic motions.
-Engage the Lats: Well, I just pointed out that the lats are a prime core stabilizer. I know, most people don’t think of them that way, but when you look at the body you see how close the lats are part of working with the rest of the trunk to create stability.
-Have an Active Grip: The way we get the lats involved are by optimizing the grip. So, if our grip position is off (palms down instead of palms facing each other) and we aren’t “ripping” or creating tension against the weight, we aren’t engaging the lats. The grip has a high correlation to the rotator cuff and lats, but we have to use them right!
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DVRT UK master, Greg Perlaki shows how we can use these concepts of the Press Outs to help build strength and mobility in many different ways.
#2 Moving Weights
If we ask people if life is predictable and balanced, we get a resounding NO! Ask the same people if our strength training then should be so predictable and stable we see the wheels turning.
That is because the highest forms of strength training aren’t really just looking at how much weight we can lift, but what we can resist! In fact, most injuries come about because what we couldn’t resist or stop. Makes you wonder why we don’t make our strength training more reactive.
Funny enough, when we have people perform some of the Ultimate Sandbag exercises they are surprised how challenging they are in ways they wouldn’t expect!
These Ultimate Sandbag exercises aren’t done mindlessly either. They are progressions of our foundations to work us to the point where we know how and when to create stability in more complex environments.
Ultimate Sandbag exercises like strength coach, Joel Gunterman demonstrates introduces producing motion at one segment of our body and resisting force at another. Just like what happens to us in life all the time!
Fitness expert, Alwyn Cosgrove, shows one of our strongest reactive Ultimate Sandbag exercises in our Tornado drill. Reacting to the moving weight and being able to absorb the force in a lunge position and redirect the weight requires the functional strength we ideally want to develop.
#3 Moving In Different Planes
Slowly, people are realizing that moving in different planes of motion is important in our training. Yes, the thing we do in just about every other motion in life, and avoid all the time in the gym, is important to think about how it changes our intensity. However, we have to do so with purpose otherwise these exercises do become more novel than effective.
DVRT UK Master, Greg Perlaki, shows how we need to first learn how to resist rotation which teaches us how to control our trunk and pelvis.
That leads us to then building rotation by reinforcing the stability of the trunk and movement of the hips. Planes of motion can’t be jumped it has to be approached like we do in weight or reps.
These types of Ultimate Sandbag exercises teach us to resist lateral motion where most knee and low back issues stem from.
Then Cory shows us how we can be very dynamic moving in the frontal plane. We find these exercises create such a metabolic demand because energy has to be devoted to producing and resisting force at the same time.
What you find is that the more we understand the body, the more freedom we have in the exercises we create. Those that say such training is “stupid” or “silly” often do so because they don’t really understand how we move in life! As you can see, it doesn’t take a PhD in biomechanics to appreciate how these movements are based on the science of human movement!
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