Core work has a tendency to be pretty meh. Hold some planks, crank out crunches, and count the reps until you can move onto something a little more engaging.
This core workout from Men’s Health fitness director Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S. and Women’s Health editor-in-chief Liz Plosser is anything but boring. By working on your stability as well as rotational and offset movement patterns, the routine dynamically trains the core for real-to-life strength that will translate into better overall athletic performance.
Grab a friend and a medicine ball, and get rolling.
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1. Gator Roll Med-Ball Tosses
Holding the medicine ball, get in a hollow hold position while your partner does the same sans ball a few yards away. You and your partner’s feet should point toward each other. Roll in the same direction as each other, throw the med ball to your partner, and then roll back to start and toss again. The challenge here is to not let your arms or legs touch the floor at any point, working your abs, obliques, and hips.
3 sets of 10 to 12 reps per person
2. Hollow-Hold Lateral Throws
Get in a hollow hold position. Have your partner stand a few feet away from you to your side, throwing and catching the medicine ball. As you catch the ball in your hollow hold, twist and rotate your upper torso to cushion the catch and wind you up for the throw. Move as quickly as possible as you can while maintaining solid form.
3 sets of 30 seconds of work per side (per person)
3. Single-Arm Plank Med-Ball Passes
Get in a low-plank position with your feet about shoulder-width apart for balance and have your partner do the same so that you’re facing each other. Place a medicine ball in front of one side’s arm. Keeping your core and entire body tight, lift one arm from the floor, with your partner mirroring you. Maintaining this position, roll the ball back and forth to each other. Your hips and obliques will do overtime to keep you from teetering toward the floor.
2 sets of 30 seconds per side
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