Not Our Mother's Sit-Ups!
The next level of functional core training
If you have been following me for any length of time, you know that I am a huge proponent of core training. The reason I focus so much on this is because during mid-life, our joints become more unstable due to loss of muscle mass and changing character and laxity of the tendons and ligaments that stabilize joint complexes such as the shoulders, hips and knees. Functional movement (i.e movements we do every day) originate and gain stability in the core of the body, progress through the joints and end at the extremities. A stable core thus supports the joints and helps to prevent injury.
Another reason core training is important is for balance. As we age into our 7th, 8th and 9th decades, we will have lost nearly 1/3 of our bone density putting us at risk for osteoporosis and bone fractures. A key strategy for reducing fracture risk is reducing fall risk. Like any functional movement, maintaining balance begins with a strong core.
What I love about this workout is that the combination of movements recruits multuple muscle groups from the shoulders to the ankles. The Renegade Row requires not just a plank hold but strength and balance as you row. The kettlebell swing targets hip extension and the posterior chain, and finally, the flutter kicks are all about the rectus abdominus (a.k.a “the six pack”). Put it all together and you have comprehensive functional core training!
TABATA (20-sec work/10sec rest) x 5 rounds (5 minutes)
· Push-ups (low difficulty option)
· Sit Ups (knees bent, feet anchored)
Watch the video links in the workout and take 5-10min to practice each movement in sequence for 4-6 repetitions at low intensity for 2 rounds. Select your options and weights for the workout during this practice time.
EMOM 18 (Every minute on the minute for 18 minutes). Use any remaining time in the minute interval for rest.
Minute 1: 40 seconds of DB Renegade Rows (remaining 20 seconds - rest)
Minute 2: 10 Kettlebell swings- eye level (advanced: overhead swing):
Minute 3: 40 weighted flutter kicks
** For the weighted flutter kicks, select a single dumbbell or plate, hold it above your chest with your arms extended, lift your shoulders slightly off the floor, and keep the lower back flat against the floor- do NOT arch your back!. With a tight core brace, perform the flutter kick R+L = 1 repetition.
This 10-minute lower back/front body opening recovery sequence will feel great after this core-focused workout.
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