Workout Of The Month: Kneeling Exercises

Workout Of The Month: Kneeling Exercises

12 Workout Of The Month 1

Walk into a gym and you’ll notice a lot of the same thing: people standing, sitting, or lying on their backs while they are lifting weights or exercising.

Even though these get the job done, there is another position that can help strengthen your body and balance. Kneeling.

Yes, kneeling.

Not only is this position a change up from your regular bench press, curls, or squats, but it most importantly can improve your balance, strength, and core stability.

Thanks to our friends at stack.com we can help you work some of these exercises into your regular routine. Here are six of our favorite kneeling exercises for you to pick and choose from:

 

1. Ball Chops:

  • Kneeling on your left knee with the right leg in a lunge position, hold the med ball overhead.
  • Drive the ball across your body diagonally toward the right hip and simultaneously rotate right.
  • Slowly return to start position and repeat nine more times. Immediately switch kneeling positions and do 10 Ball Chops.

 

2. Upright Rows:

  • Kneeling on both knees in an upright position, hold two dumbbells with a pronated grip (Hands facing away from the body) near your thighs and pull them up to chest level.
  • Hold for one second and slowly return to start, repeating nine more times.

 

3. Knee Elevated Ball Rollouts:

  • Start by placing both hands atop an exercise ball while kneeling on both knees.
  • Raise the right knee and roll the ball forward extending your arms and roll it back, continuing for 10 reps.
  • Without stopping, repeat with the left knee airborne.

 

4. Bird Dogs:

  • Begin by kneeling on both knees with your hands spaced shoulder-width apart on a soft surface.
  • Looking straight ahead lift your right knee and extend the leg back while at the same time raising your left hand and extending your arm forward at shoulder level.
  • Focus on an object ahead of you to maintain balance and hold the position 10 seconds.
  • Repeat with the left knee/leg airborne and the right hand/arm extended. Continue alternating 10 times.

 

5. Dumbbell Rows:

  • Begin in a push-up position on both knees with a dumbbell at your right side.
  • Elevate your right knee and pull the dumbbell up with your right hand to your waist and pause while squeezing your shoulder blades together.
  • Slowly lower and do nine more reps.
  • After 10 reps, repeat by raising your left knee and pulling the dumbbell up with your left hand.

 

6. Knee-Elevated Ball Push-ups:

  • Kneel on both knees with your hands atop a med ball in a modified push-up position.
  • Lift the right knee and perform 10 push-ups.
  • Switch and raise the left knee and do another 10 push-ups.

Looking to get faster? Check out last month’s Speed Building post — and make sure to check the Eastbay blog on January 15 for our next post in the series.

Ask An IMG Trainer: 5 Strength Training Tips You Need To Know

Ask An IMG Trainer: 5 Strength Training Tips You Need To Know

AskATrainer Story

Building muscle mass is something that is extremely difficult for athletes at any age. However, for high school kids who are active and have high metabolisms, it can be even tougher.

For our inaugural Ask An IMG Trainer blog, our Twitter followers agreed and voted that we track down info to help them progress when it comes to strength training.

In response, we took the time to sit down with Matt Wheaton, a Physical Conditioning Coach with our partners at IMG Academy. In our conversation with Wheaton, he gave us five great strength training tips that you need to know.

Here they are:

1. Catalog Your Workouts

“Catalog not only your reps and exercises, but write down how hard you are working out on a 1-10 scale as well. This allows you to make sure you are progressing in a safe manner, and also allows you to look back and say, ‘I was doing this exercise with this amount of reps or sets and I was at an 8 out of 10 that day’. Three or four weeks down the line when that same workout is now a four, that shows you are making a pretty significant jump. This will help you keep consistency and find the quality of strength you want.”

2. Stay Consistent

AskATrainer Story 1

“Whatever you decide is the quality you want to focus on when you train, needs to stay consistent. When it comes to strength, everyone says there is no magic pill that will help you. They are absolutely right. You can’t do one day of bench press and expect your upper body strength to jump exceptionally, so sticking with the plan and cataloging your workouts to stay consistent is very important.”

3. Keep It Simple To Start

“The simplest is the best. We work a lot on the goblet squat here, which I think is the king of all exercises because you can use a variety of implements to increase resistance that are easily accessible. Whether it be a dumbbell, a kettlebell, a sand bag, a medicine ball, even a backpack. The goblet squat is one of the most basic squat forms, and is a great full body workout. Once you get that down, by all means throw in any barbell variety or wrinkle you want, as long as you maintain a high quality of movement with those new implements to ensure safety. This goes for many other exercises as well.

4. Implement Rest Between Reps

“I think one of the biggest misconceptions right now in strength training is that more reps is better. A lot of young athletes have this mindset where the more I do, the better that I am going to be. This is a great mindset from the standpoint of kids are much more active in looking for ways to prepare themselves for an upcoming season, but a lot of these young athletes misunderstand that your adaptation to this strength training comes when you rest. You need to understand that when you are strength training, you are breaking down muscle, and the only way you are getting stronger or bigger is if you allow your body to rest.”

5. Draw A Pyramid To Balance Out Your Strength And Cardio Training

“Draw a pyramid and make endurance training your biggest level. That is going to support all recovery. If you don’t have a good base within the aerobic system, you’re going to see any strength gains or speed adaptations drop off pretty quickly. Pick a day to have a specific aerobic day, and then come back the next day in the weight room and work on the phosphocreatine system. Allowing recovery from the aerobic work you did the day prior, while working your short-burst energy system. It’s a tough balancing game and you need to be conscious about what you are doing and what you are working towards.”


Keep your eyes peeled next month for another poll on our Twitter account. Cast your vote, and if you’re lucky your topic may be the subject of our next IMG Ask A Trainer blog!

Maximize Speed To Perform

Maximize Speed To Perform

By Travelle Gaines

Most people believe speed is something you’re born with. But in reality, that’s not true – speed is a science and can be developed.

Speed To Perform 1

Speed is defined as a limb’s quickness of movement generated by the athlete’s ability to apply force and utilize it with great frequency (or in simpler terms: Force X Frequency = Speed.)

You can actually train your body to deliver more force to the ground and, once that happens, become faster and more explosive. Speed is an integral part of almost every sport and can be utilized in a variety of different ways.

To maximize your stride length and frequency, you need to work on your stability, mobility, strength and technique. Working on your hamstring flexibility and hip mobility is crucial for stride frequency improvement, while workouts such as Olympic Lifts and Plyometrics elevate your stride lengths by developing your muscular strength and power.

Speed To Perform 2

However, developing speed is a rather complex process, and mastering the technique behind your movements may be the most important part. The brain and the nervous system need to learn the motor skills to control these fast motions efficiently. Practicing the basic fundamentals of running form will not only improve your skills, but it will also improve your brain’s ability to adapt to these quick movements. You have to be able to perform these complex motions at slow speeds with 100% accuracy before you can transition to high speeds. Working on your technique on a consistent basis will ensure that your movement patterns and nervous system stay in sync.

So, to recap — here are your general principles for speed development:

  • Work on your mobility to upgrade your range of motion in your hips. This will drastically effect your speed and assist in preventing injuries.
  • Improve your flexibility through stretching to improve your turnover ability.
  • Perform plyometrics movements such as jumping, hopping and bounding to develop explosive power.
  • Make sure the skills you develop relate to movements you will make in your sport!

For more performance and workout tips from world-class trainer, Travelle Gaines, check out athleticgaines.com.

5 Tips For Sticking To Your Training Program When School Returns

5 Tips For Sticking To Your Training Program When School Returns

As the final weeks of summer approach and you begin to get back in the routine of school, practice, games, and homework, maintaining the drive and finding the time to train can get tough.

You won’t have the free time you once had a few months ago, and you won’t get nearly as many hours of shut-eye as you were when you could sleep until noon. But you’re still expected to keep in shape for your sport.

DON’T PANIC! This is where we come in — we came up with five tips to help you stick to a workout and nutrition plan as school returns.

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  1. Continue To Eat Breakfast: No matter how early you have to get up to get a nice meal before your workout or class, get it done! Without breakfast in you, you are missing out on the energy you need to help push you through your classes and practices. If needed, prep the meal the night before to save you time.
  2. Pack A Lunch And Skip The Cafeteria Food: Many schools still serve pre-made, processed foods. This is the cheaper route for them to go, but in turn, you’re getting lunch that isn’t fresh and may be high in sodium, sugar, and fat. The safest route to go is to pack a lunch the night before that you can fill with proteins, fruits, and vegetables. These foods will not only help you perform well in class, but they will also give you the needed energy for practice or workouts. Click here to learn about what foods you should eat every day.
  3. Take Advantage Of Your Weekends: Your weekend is when you can catch up on rest, but it’s also when you’re able to spend more time in the gym. Sleep in all you want, but don’t forget to get some running or lifting in when you aren’t busy with class and homework.
  4. Work Out Before School: With homework, tests, practice, and a social life, finding time to get in a solid workout can be really tough. Instead of going to a busy gym, worn out after a long day of class, beat the rush and work out before school. Getting your training done in the morning will also make you feel better during the day.
  5. Get A Good Night Sleep When Possible: With practices running late, homework, studying, and even possibly a part-time job, it can be tough to get to bed at a decent hour as a student athlete. After you’re finished with your obligations for the night, your best bet is staying off of electronics, which can keep your attention for hours.

Not only will you feel better on a daily basis if you can follow these tips, but your overall health and strength will benefit as well. If you put your time in over the summer, training and focusing on your health, why give up now?