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Smarter Core Training and Better Mobility Exercises

It may sound simple, but it isn’t. That is if we just improve our core training then we can help a myriad of training goals, most notably, better mobility training. Why do I say it isn’t easy? Well, we have to appreciate that core training is more than abs or ab exercises. When we talk about the 35 muscles that make up your core, we are also referencing muscles that you can’t consciously control (when was the last time you flexed your multifidus?) . That means we have to use movement and load to teach not only these muscles to work, but how to work in the right sequence in their natural chains.

Building functional strength is not just about building up an individual muscle, but to teach it to work correctly. That is one of the big differences between functional training and bodybuilding. There are still quite a few people that believe isolating and making it strong results in it working in more complex ways, that really isn’t the case at all. The idea of teaching a muscle to not just work, but do so in a specific way refers to more motor control. It is this quality that is more consistently shown in research to build resilience than just isolation strength training.

A good example of this is in many of the lift/chop patterns we use. Such exercises are not exclusive to DVRT, but I believe we have a unique way of implementing this old PNF idea. Diagonal patterns are foundational to PNF because it is how our body is designed to function. We have our opposite arms and legs work together and when we want to produce great power we create rotation. These ideas all point to diagonal patterns and when we look at concepts like the Spiral Line (you can see how the muscles connect in this chain) we get much smarter and more effective core training. That is core training that also results in better mobility as well.

core training


A LOT of mobility issues are actually being masked as stability issues, especially core stability. Since our spine is of the utmost importance to our body, it will do whatever it can to protect it. How does our body go about protecting itself if it perceives instability? You may have guessed, it will reduce the range of motion so that we don’t expose our instability which can create injury. Looking again at concepts like the “Joint by Joint Approach” we can gain appreciation how this concept of better core training results in better mobility.

What does DVRT unique though? Physical Therapist, Jessica Bento wrote a great blog on (HERE) on why a lot of other tools don’t work quite the same even though the movements may look similar. The key is the shoulder position we use when we grab onto the Ultimate Sandbag and the tension we can produce that allows us to optimally engage our lats and core for that stability.

DVRT Master, Cory Cripe and Fitness Lying Down coach, Megan Berner show how we use these concepts in more dynamic ways and how we hold and create tension on the Ultimate Sandbag is key!


DVRT UK Master, Greg Perlaki shows how we even use these diagonal patterns in our power and more advanced training drills. 

The second part of what makes what we do unique is that we will use these methods through a host of movement patterns, not just half kneeling, or tall kneeling as many lifts/chops are often only used. Using functional patterns of the body with lifts/chops enhances the effectiveness of both and helps us realize the importance of good core training.

Robin Paget not only shows great DVRT core training drills that demonstrate these ideas, she shows how her own husband has been helped in his mobility just by applying these ideas. 

More than ever we want to share thoughtful, practical, fun, and highly effective training strategies with you! Fitness is going to look different at least in the near future and we want to be a part of providing you better solutions. Hopefully you will take advantage of our great sale of 35% off our DVRT Online education for this week only and 25% off our Ultimate Sandbags and DVRT workout programs HERE