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Move Over Crunches, Here Comes Anti-Rotational Core Exercises

Pop Quiz: What exercises are purposely designed to combat excessive twisting during exercises, like running?

  • A. Crunches
  • B. Stretching
  • C. Anti-Rotational Core Exercise
  • D. Handstand Walks

If you guessed (C) Anti-Rotational Core Exercise, you’re right!

Why Anti-Rotational Core Exercises?

Efficient running and many athletic movements requires a strong core, especially at keeping rotational forces at bay. With each step you take, your body is fighting to keep a stable strong body and not let the arms cross the body too much or hips rotate too much.

Anti-Rotational Core exercises focus on keeping a strong, stable core while using an outside force (resistance bands, dumbbells, kettlebells, hand or foot movements) to challenge your abdominal muscles.

What Anti-Rotational Core Exercises should I do?

Let’s get started! In this post, we’re focusing on:

  1. Front Plank Shoulder Taps
  2. Front Plank Pull Throughs⁠
  3. Plank with Row
  4. Pallof Press⁠

Anti-Rotational Core Exercise Video

Front Plank Shoulder Tap

While in a traditional straight arm front plank, bring your hand to your opposite shoulder. Repeat.

Focus on keeping your hips pointing to the floor and not allowing your body to rotate as you pick up your hand off the ground.

You can go on our knees to modify to make this exercise easier. If you want an additional challenge, try lifting up one leg as you lift up your hand.

Front Plank Pull Throughs⁠

Set up in a traditional straight arm plank, and put a weight on the opposite of your body. Grab the weight with your opposite hand and pull it under your body. Take the other hand and pull it under your body to the starting position.

Focus on keeping your hips pointing to the floor and not shrugging your shoulder too much as you pull the weight under your body.

You can modify on your knees to make this exercise easier, and always increase the weight to make it harder.

Plank with Row

Pick a dumbbell and put it one of your hands as you set up in a traditional straight arm plank.

Focus on keeping your hips pointing to the floor and bring the weight towards you with your elbow tucked to your side.

You can either repeat on the same side or if you want an additional challenge–alternating, rolling or passing the weight to the other hand and performing a row on that side.

Pallof Press⁠

Tie a band to a squat rack, door, or something similar that is stable. Standing with your feet hip width apart, push the band away from your body and back towards your chest.

Focus on keeping your hips and shoulders aligned, not allowing any twisting or rotation from the pull of the band. Do not allow your shoulders to raise or shrug while doing the movement.

To make the exercise easier, stand closer to the fixed point (squat rack, door, etc) and to make it harder, step away from the fixed point.

Anti-Rotational Core Showdown

How do these exercises feel? Are you activating your core muscles during the movements?

If you feel your lumbar musculature or tops of your shoulders/neck tightening or being used in the exercise, you probably need to dial it down. Focus on the right form before increasing the resistance or repetitions.

Call or text 614-850-0500 for more help or instruction for your anti-rotational core exercise!

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