most people think of abdominal exercises,
they think of slow, deliberate movements
with squeezing and tightening, which
other than keeping your guts in, stabilizing
your core area, and looking good,
what ELSE are your abs designed for?
about explosive power! It's THE most
neglected aspect of abdominal conditioning
that can have the greatest effect
on your athletic performance.
abdominal exercises do not use anything
even close to a powerful stroke. Normally,
when you see ab exercises done, they're
done (like I mentioned above) in a
very deliberate manner.
for the most part, it's actually better
that way. If you try and use momentum
and explosiveness with a crunch, you
don't get any muscle tension and get
almost nothing out of it. If you use
explosiveness in a weighted exercise,
you put dangerous torque on the body.
where bands come in.
bands, you get the resistance AND
you get the built-in deceleration
of the band as it stretches out. Bottom
line, you can explode into a band
HARD and not have to worry about hurting
yourself because the band will stop
the momentum very effectively!
this exercise, you're going to use
two bands - one high and one low.
You're going to wrap one around your
knee and grab the other with your
hand. Then you're going to explode
up with your knee while simultaneously
yanking down with your hand.
abs bear the brunt of this and will
really get burning fast!
is a GREAT exercise if you're interested
in developing sprint speed. It's also
an excellent one for martial artists
as it helps developing kneeing and
reason this exercise is so good for
developing sprint speed lies in the
hip flexors. One of the biggest factors
in running speed is the ability to
get your leg back in front of you
as quickly and explosively as possible.
you get to a certain level and overall
leg and body power is maximized, hip
flexor explosiveness is HUGE. This
exercise, in addition to training
the abs, hits the hip flexors with
explosive training. VERY effective
for improving leg speed.
recommend IronWoody Training bands
for all band work. Great prices and
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your Training Bands by clicking here.
How To Do Explosive
perform this exercise, you'll need
two bands. I like to use reasonably
thick bands (the green ones, if you're
using the IronWoody bands I mentioned
above) to get a really powerful movement.
one band to something low and behind
you while attaching the other band
to something higher up and in front
a cable cross-over machine (not attaching
to the cables but using the frame
of the machine). I attach the low
band to one upright and the high band
to the cross-beam on the other end.
inside the band with your right leg
then pull the band up so that it's
just above your left knee.
reach forward and grab the other band
that's hanging down in front of you
with your OPPOSING hand - e.g. if
the band is on your left leg, grab
it with your right hand). The bands
should be hitched around these objects
(demo at the bottom of the page on
how to hitch bands if you need it).
your start position.
with an explosive movement, drive
your knee up as high as you can while
bringing your arm down as hard as
down and pause briefly at the bottom
then repeat until you feel you can't
put a lot of explosiveness into the
movement - you'll know this by feel.
Generally, with a powerful movement,
it's about 4 to 6 reps.
what I like to do is when I can't
do more reps holding with the one
hand, I'll grab the band with BOTH
hands and continue.
it's the upper body that fatigues
first, so switching to both arms allows
you to keep going and burning out
the abs and hip flexors.
reps of this fast and explosively.
With this variation, I like to omit
the pause at the bottom and just barely
touch my foot to the ground before
exploding right back up.
you're gripping the band with both
hands, your balance is better and
you should be able to pop right back
up pretty well.
you're toasted on the one side, let
go of the band then step back and
let it drop off your knee.
legs and pull the band up above your
the same procedure as above, grabbing
the band with your left hand and bringing
the two together. Again, finish with
both arms on the band.
get an idea of the explosiveness of
this exercise, be sure to watch the
video. Still pictures don't give you
the real impression of how powerfully
this exercise should be done.
you want to improve abdominal power
and explosiveness and increase your
leg speed when sprinting, give this
one a try!