ATB Exercises

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Under hand bicep curls

 

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Instructions
  • Grip the bar with a strong underhand grip and mid lengths to each end, seek to bring the thumb towards the second finger (depending on the thickness of the bar)
  • Stand with the feet shoulder width apart. If lower back extension becomes a problem, or swaying of the upper body, bend the knees slightly and tilt the hips under
  • Inhale and bring the back of the hands towards your shoulders.
  • Attempting to keep the shoulders drawn back, exhale and lower the bar to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Biceps, Forearm flexors

Common Potential Red Flags

Inability to keep shoulder head back (i.e. shoulder head protracts, even with a lighter weight)
Pain in the front of the shoulder

Variation
  • Breathing variations (the above pattern relates to shoulder head positioning rather than effort)
  • Single arm
  • Time under tension
  • 1/2 reps, pauses etc.

close grip bicep curls

 

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Instructions
  • Grip the bar with a strong underhand grip with hands closer to the middle of the bar, seek to bring the thumb towards the second finger (depending on the thickness of the bar)
  • Stand with the feet shoulder width apart. If lower back extension becomes a problem, or swaying of the upper body, bend the knees slightly and tilt the hips under
  • Inhale and bring the back of the hands towards your shoulders.
  • Attempting to keep the shoulders drawn back, exhale and lower the bar to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Biceps, Forearm flexors

Common Potential Red Flags

Inability to keep shoulder head back (i.e. shoulder head protracts, even with a lighter weight)
Pain in the front of the shoulder

Variation
  • Breathing variations (the above pattern relates to shoulder head positioning rather than effort)
  • Single arm
  • Time under tension
  • 1/2 reps, pauses etc.

One Arm bicep curls

 

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Instructions
  • Grip the bar with a strong underhand grip but with one hand only, seek to bring the thumb towards the second finger (depending on the thickness of the bar)
  • Stand with the feet shoulder width apart. If lower back extension becomes a problem, or swaying of the upper body, bend the knees slightly and tilt the hips under
  • Inhale and bring the back of the hands towards your shoulders.
  • Attempting to keep the shoulders drawn back, exhale and lower the bar to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Biceps, Forearm flexors

Common Potential Red Flags

Inability to keep shoulder head back (i.e. shoulder head protracts, even with a lighter weight)
Pain in the front of the shoulder

Variation
  • Breathing variations (the above pattern relates to shoulder head positioning rather than effort)
  • Time under tension
  • 1/2 reps, pauses etc.

Wide Grip bicep curls

 

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Instructions
  • Grip the bar with a strong wide underhand grip, seek to bring the thumb towards the second finger (depending on the thickness of the bar)
  • Stand with the feet shoulder width apart. If lower back extension becomes a problem, or swaying of the upper body, bend the knees slightly and tilt the hips under
  • Inhale and bring the back of the hands towards your shoulders.
  • Attempting to keep the shoulders drawn back, exhale and lower the bar to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Biceps, Forearm flexors

Common Potential Red Flags

Inability to keep shoulder head back (i.e. shoulder head protracts, even with a lighter weight)
Pain in the front of the shoulder

Variation
  • Breathing variations (the above pattern relates to shoulder head positioning rather than effort)
  • Single arm
  • Time under tension
  • 1/2 reps, pauses etc.

Over hand bicep curls

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Instructions
  • Grip the bar with a strong overhand grip, seek to bring the thumb towards the second finger (depending on the thickness of the bar)
  • Stand with the feet shoulder width apart. If lower back extension becomes a problem, or swaying of the upper body, bend the knees slightly and tilt the hips under
  • Inhale and bring the back of the hands towards your shoulders.
  • Attempting to keep the shoulders drawn back, exhale and lower the bar to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Biceps, Forearm flexors

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Inability to keep shoulder head back (i.e. shoulder head protracts, even with a lighter weight)
  • Pain in the front of the shoulder
Variation
  • Breathing variations (the above pattern relates to shoulder head positioning rather than effort)
  • Single arm
  • Time under tension
  • 1/2 reps, pauses etc.

Hammer curls

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Instructions
  • Stand with feet hip width apart, grip the bar with a hook grip to secure the bar. To do so, curl the fingers tightly around the bar, with the thumb gripping the bar underneath the 2nd finger. Allow the 2nd finger to push into the top of the thumb
  • Keeping the elbow against the body, and the palm facing towards the centre of the body, bend at the elbow to lift the weight, keeping the bar perpendicular to the forearm throughout
  • Bring the bar to the shoulder before lowering the bar back to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Biceps

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Inability to keep shoulder head back (ie. shoulder head protracts, even with a lighter weight)
  • Pain in the front of the shoulder
  • Pain at the bottom of the thumb joint at the wrist
  • Inability to keep wrist straight
Variation
  • Double arms
  • Alternate arms
  • Changing grip placement for more forearm involvement (flexors or extensors)
  • Moving the bar past perpendicular throughout or at the top of the movement (forearms)

Shoulder Press

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Instructions
  • Ideally, sit on a bench with a back support, placing the bar in front of your chest
  • Grip the bar firmly with the hands facing forwards. Depending in the thickness of the bar, look to move the thumb towards the 2nd finger, keeping the wrists straight
  • Without bending the wrists, exhale and press the bar upwards as you press your lower back into the support. Move through a range of motion that allows your back to be supported and your shoulders away from your ears
  • Inhale and return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Anterior Shoulder pain
  • Inability to keep the shoulders pressed down and retracted
  • Previous shoulder and pec injury
  • Neck strains or tightness
Variation
  • Single bar in each hand
  • Reverse curl to start position

Shoulder Press with Squat

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Instructions
  • Ideally, sit on a bench with a back support, placing the bar in front of your chest
  • Grip the bar firmly with the hands facing forwards. Depending in the thickness of the bar, look to move the thumb towards the 2nd finger, keeping the wrists straight
  • Without bending the wrists, exhale and press the bar upwards as you press your lower back into the support. Move through a range of motion that allows your back to be supported and your shoulders away from your ears
  • Inhale and return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Anterior Shoulder pain
  • Inability to keep the shoulders pressed down and retracted
  • Previous shoulder and pec injury
  • Neck strains or tightness
Variation
  • Single bar in each hand
  • Reverse curl to start position

Single Arm Shoulder Press

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Instructions
  • Ideally, sit on a bench with a back support, placing the bar in front of your chest
  • Grip the bar firmly with the hands facing forwards. Depending in the thickness of the bar, look to move the thumb towards the 2nd finger, keeping the wrists straight
  • Without bending the wrists, exhale and press the bar upwards as you press your lower back into the support. Move through a range of motion that allows your back to be supported and your shoulders away from your ears
  • Inhale and return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Anterior Shoulder pain
  • Inability to keep the shoulders pressed down and retracted
  • Previous shoulder and pec injury
  • Neck strains or tightness
Variation
  • Single bar in each hand
  • Reverse curl to start position

One Arm Lying Press

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Instructions
  • Lay on a bench or on a swiss ball with the ball between the shoulder blades and the hips held high. Grip a bar firmly in each hand, with the palm facing each other.
  • Press the right hand up until the elbow is straight. Push the shoulder blades firmly into the ball. This is the starting position.
  • With the shoulders blades pressed into the ball, slowly press with the left arm, as you begin to lower the right. The arms should cross around the half way point.
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders, arms, upper back, chest

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Anterior Shoulder pain
  • Inability to keep the shoulders pressed down and retracted
  • Previous shoulder and pec injury
  • Neck strains or tightness
Variation
  • Once leg lifted
  • Reverse curl to start position

One Arm Lying Press with Leg Situp

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Instructions
  • Lay on a bench or on a swiss ball with the ball between the shoulder blades and the hips held high. Grip a bar firmly in each hand, with the palm facing each other.
  • Press the right hand up until the elbow is straight. Push the shoulder blades firmly into the ball. This is the starting position.
  • With the shoulders blades pressed into the ball, slowly press with the left arm, as you begin to lower the right. The arms should cross around the half way point.
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders, arms, upper back, chest

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Anterior Shoulder pain
  • Inability to keep the shoulders pressed down and retracted
  • Previous shoulder and pec injury
  • Neck strains or tightness
Variation
  • Once leg lifted
  • Reverse curl to start position

Military Press

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Instructions
  • Bring the bar in front of the chest, gripping very slightly wider than the shoulders, palms facing the front.
  • With the feet together and elbows pointed forwards, maintain a vertical forearm and wrist as you press the bar overhead
  • As the bar reaches the end position overhead, ensure the traps are away from the ears and lower back in neutral
  • Descend the bar by drawing the elbows towards the ribs
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders, triceps

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain, elbow, wrist, shoulder pain. Poor shoulder mobility. Chronically tight pecs. Scapular dyskinesis
Variation
  • Push the head through the arms at the top position. This is good for those who are prone to hyperextension of the lumbar spine.

Standing Tri extension

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet around shoulder width apart, hold a bar behind the head with the palms facing forwards and the elbows pointing and high. Have the elbows as high as possible without hyperextending the lower back
  • Gripping the bar firmly, extend the arms to push the bar towards the ceiling until the arms are straight
  • Keeping the elbows in position and the upper arms still, inhale and bend the arms to bring the bar back to the starting position
  • Exhale and repeat
Muscles Targeted

Triceps

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Tennis elbow
Variation
  • Kneeling
  • Supine

Bent over row

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet shoulder width apart and gripping a bar with the palms facing back, hinge at the hips and bring the chest towards the floor, knees slightly bent and the back straight
  • Keeping the back straight (and not hyperextended) and the entire torso still, pull the bar towards the abdomen
  • As you draw the bar up, keep the elbows close, and the shoulders towards the back pockets
  • Feel the lower traps contract at the top and slowly lower the bar to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Back (Lats, Lower/mid traps, rhomboids, erector spinae)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement, lower back pain
Variation
  • Underhand grip, pause at the top and keep shoulders squeezed during eccentric phase, wide grip

One Arm Bent over row

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet shoulder width apart and gripping a bar with the palms facing back, hinge at the hips and bring the chest towards the floor, knees slightly bent and the back straight
  • Keeping the back straight (and not hyperextended) and the entire torso still, pull the bar towards the abdomen
  • As you draw the bar up, keep the elbows close, and the shoulders towards the back pockets
  • Feel the lower traps contract at the top and slowly lower the bar to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Back (Lats, Lower/mid traps, rhomboids, erector spinae)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement, lower back pain
Variation
  • Underhand grip, pause at the top and keep shoulders squeezed during eccentric phase, wide grip

bent over row/kickback

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet shoulder width apart and gripping a bar with the palms facing towards the body, hinge at the hips and bring the chest towards the floor, knees slightly bent and the back straight.
  • Ensure you are holding the bar firmly at the centre, keeping the wrists straight throughout
  • Keeping the back straight (and not hyperextended) and the entire torso still, inhale as you draw the bar up, keep the elbows close, and the shoulders towards the back pockets
  • Exhale and extend the arms and feel contraction in the triceps, ensuring the shoulders stay away from the ears and the wrists remain straight
  • Inhale and bend the arms drawing the shoulder head back, exhale return to the start position
Muscles Targeted

Back, triceps

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder pain, tennis elbow, lower back pain
Variation
  • Grip the bar low or high, move the bar with the lift, alternate hands, single hand, kneeling on a bench for support

Bent over single arm tricep extension

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet shoulder width apart and gripping a bar with the palms facing towards the body, hinge at the hips and bring the chest towards the floor, knees slightly bent and the back straight.
  • Ensure you are holding the bar firmly at the centre, keeping the wrists straight throughout
  • Keeping the back straight (and not hyperextended) and the entire torso still, inhale as you draw the bar up, keep the elbows close, and the shoulders towards the back pockets
  • Exhale and extend the arms and feel contraction in the triceps, ensuring the shoulders stay away from the ears and the wrists remain straight
  • Inhale and bend the elbows again, keeping the elbows up and close to the body. Straighten the arm again and continue
Muscles Targeted

Triceps

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder pain
Variation
  • Alternate arms, grip position (high/low)

Good mornings

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Instructions
  • Place a bar on the shoulders upper back, supporting it with the hands towards the end of the bar
  • Initiate a hip hinge movement, by breaking the front crease of the hip and sending the hips back behind you.
  • Let the knees bend slightly and keep the weight in the heels of the feet. Ensure the knees do not travel forward, and keep the arches of the feet off the ground.
  • Feel the glutes and hamstrings contract as you come towards your end range of motion. Be sure that you do not hyperextend the lower back
  • Push into the heels and return to a standing position, ensuring you do not sway the lower back.
Muscles Targeted

Back, glutes, hamstrings

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain, hamstring tendinopathy
Variation
  • Hold a light bar overhead with straight arms (challenges the lats)

Front Delt raise

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet hip width, firmly grip the bar at the centre, palm facing towards the body.
  • With the thumb pointing forwards, and the elbow very slightly bent, raise the bar up in front of the body until it travels slightly beyond vertical. Ensure that the body stays still.
  • Keeping the shoulder pulled back, return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Delts ,(forearms)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement
Variation
  • Start with the bar flat on the hips and twist the bar through the movement
  • Alternate
  • Both arms together

One Arm Front Raise

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet hip width, firmly grip the bar at the centre, palm facing towards the body.
  • With the thumb pointing forwards, and the elbow very slightly bent, raise the bar up in front of the body until it travels slightly beyond vertical. Ensure that the body stays still.
  • Keeping the shoulder pulled back, return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Delts ,(forearms)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement
Variation
  • Start with the bar flat on the hips and twist the bar through the movement
  • Alternate
  • Both arms together

Two Hand Front Raise

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet hip width, firmly grip the bar at the centre, palm facing towards the body.
  • With the thumb pointing forwards, and the elbow very slightly bent, raise the bar up in front of the body until it travels slightly beyond vertical. Ensure that the body stays still.
  • Keeping the shoulder pulled back, return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Delts ,(forearms)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement
Variation
  • Start with the bar flat on the hips and twist the bar through the movement
  • Alternate
  • Both arms together

lateral raise

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet hip width, firmly grip the bar at the centre, palm facing towards the body.
  • With the thumb pointing forwards, and the elbow very slightly bent, raise the bar up lifting the elbows away from the side of the body. Ensure that the body stays still.
  • Keeping the shoulder pulled back, return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement
Variation
  • Twist the bar to vertical at the top of the movement

Bent over side lateral raise

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet hip width, firmly grip the bar at the centre, palm facing towards the body.
  • With the thumb pointing forwards, and the elbow very slightly bent, raise the bar up lifting the elbows away from the side of the body. Ensure that the body stays still.
  • Keeping the shoulder pulled back, return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement
Variation
  • Twist the bar to vertical at the top of the movement

side lateral raise

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Instructions
  • Standing with feet hip width, firmly grip the bar at the centre, palm facing towards the body.
  • With the thumb pointing forwards, and the elbow very slightly bent, raise the bar up lifting the elbows away from the side of the body. Ensure that the body stays still.
  • Keeping the shoulder pulled back, return to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Shoulders

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement
Variation
  • Twist the bar to vertical at the top of the movement

Close grip bench press

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Instructions
  • Lay on a narrow bench that allows for some movement of your shoulder blades with the feet flat on the ground.
  • Grip the bar firmly with a pronated grip, with a sensation of trying to bend the bar
  • Exhale and straighten the arms, pushing the bar out in front of the chest, maintaining a strong grip, and pushing the lower back into the bench
  • Inhale and bring the bar back to the start position, keeping the shoulders from rounding forward (a narrow bench will help with this)
Muscles Targeted

Chest

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder pain
Variation
  • Arched back prior to lifting (powerlifting style), Foam under the middle back for better scapula movement

wide grip bench press

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Instructions
  • Lay on a bench with the feet flat on the ground.
  • Grip the bar firmly with a pronated grip, with a sensation of trying to bend the bar
  • Exhale and straighten the arms, pushing the bar out in front of the chest, maintaining a strong grip, and pushing the lower back into the bench
  • Inhale and bring the bar back to the start position, keeping the shoulders from rounding forward (a narrow bench will help with this)
Muscles Targeted

Chest

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder pain
Variation
  • Arched back prior to lifting (powerlifting style),

Single arm flys – bar in each hand

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Instructions
  • Lay on a bench with a bar in each hand against the chest. Grip the bar firmly at the centre of the bar
  • Straighten the arms and push the bars towards the ceiling, stopping just short of the arms locking out
  • With the arms slightly bent, inhale and open your arms in a slow circular motion until you feel a stretch on the chest
  • Keeping the shoulders back, bar gripped firmly push the back into the bench (or other surface) as you exhale and strongly contract the chest muscles and bring the bars back in the same direction to the beginning position
Muscles Targeted

Chest

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement
  • Bicep tendon issues
  • Pec tears/pain
Variation
  • Swiss ball with hips held high
  • On the ground
  • Edge of bench, perpendicular to bench, hips held high

Single arm fly’s – bar is passed hand to hand

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Instructions
  • Lay on a bench with a bar in the right hand against the chest. Grip the bar firmly at the centre of the bar
  • Straighten the arm and push the bars towards the ceiling, stopping just short of the arms locking out
  • With the arm slightly bent, inhale and open your right arm in a slow circular motion until you feel a stretch on the chest
  • Keeping the shoulders back, bar gripped firmly push the back into the bench (or other surface) as you exhale and strongly contract the chest muscles and bring the bars back in the same direction to the beginning position, where you will swap the bar into the other hand
Muscles Targeted

Chest

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder impingement
  • Bicep tendon issues
  • Pec tears/pain
Variation
  • Swiss ball with hips held high
  • On the ground
  • Edge of bench, perpendicular to bench, hips held high
  • Changing distance of hands between the bar swap
  • Time under tension/speed of bar movement

Hip Thrusts

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Instructions
  • With back on a bench at a height around the base of the shoulder blades ideally, place the torsion bar on in the crease of your hips, around the height of your iliac crest. If using a heavier bar, stand it on its end next to you, and bring it over your lap once in position
  • Bring your feet towards your hips, so that when you are at the top of the hip thrust position your shins are vertical
  • Screw the feet into the ground, and exhale forcefully as you drive the hips quickly into the air, pushing the weight into the heels. Pause at the top position, noticing contraction in the glutes and ensure the lower back is not arching
  • Inhale and return to the start position
Muscles Targeted

Glutes

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain.
  • Excessive anterior pelvic tilt with inability to gain neutral spine at top position
Variation
  • Padding across the bar
  • Starting the next rep in mid-air

Stiff leg Deadlift

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Instructions
  • Stand with the feet slightly narrower than shoulder width, toes pointed forwards.
  • Depending on your hamstring flexibility, it is likely you may need to place the bar on a raised surface rather than moving all the way to the ground
  • With the knees very slightly bent, lean forward and pick the bar up off the ground. Ensure the shins are vertical and notice the stretch on the hamstrings
  • Push into the heels and stand up
  • Hinge at the hip, bringing a very slight bend into the knees, keep the shins vertical, and place the bar slightly forward as you descend, feeling the hamstrings come on stretch
  • Rest the bar on the platform and repeat
Muscles Targeted

Hamstrings

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Hamstring tendinopathy
Variation
  • One bar in each hand
  • Place a bench behind the calves to ensure vertical shins

Bent leg deadlft

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Instructions
  • Stand with the feet slightly shoulder width, toes pointed forwards.
  • Depending on your hamstring flexibility, it is likely you may need to place the bar on a raised surface rather than moving all the way to the ground
  • To pick up the bar hinge at the hips and send them backwards as you descend to the bar with a straight spine. Ensure that the shins remain vertical and the knees do not travel forward
  • Push into the heels and stand up
  • Hinge at the
Muscles Targeted

Posterior chain

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Hamstring pain/tightness
Variation
  • Stiff leg
  • Pulling bar from a rack

Single leg deadlift

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Instructions
  • From a standing position, step back into a deep lunge rear heel pointed towards the ceiling
  • Have a bar on the ground (or a raised surface) in line with the rear toes.
  • Take hold of the bar with the same side hand as the leg that is placed back.
  • Ensure the front knee is slightly behind the heel. Bring the weight into the front foot, and without allowing the hips to rotate, come into a standing position.
  • Repeat
Muscles Targeted

Posterior chain, glute medius

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Hamstring pain/tightness
Variation
  • Stiff leg
  • opposite handk

Suitcase deadlift

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Instructions
  • Stand with the feet slightly shoulder width, toes pointed forwards.
  • Place a bar either side of you, on the ground or a raised surface.
  • To pick up the bar hinge at the hips and send them backwards as you descend to the bar with a straight spine. Ensure that the shins remain vertical and the knees do not travel forward. Take hold of the bars at the midpoint with the palms facing in towards the body
  • Push into the heels and stand up
  • Hinge at the hip, bringing a slight bend into the knees, keep the shins vertical, and descend to the ground to return the bar to it’s starting position
Muscles Targeted

Posterior chain

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Hamstring pain/tightness
Variation
  • Stiff leg
  • Pulling bar from a rack

Front Squats

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Instructions
  • Pick the bar up off the ground with an overhand grip, standing up quickly, cleaning the bar into position in the chest through driving the hips. Allow the bar to rest against the top of the chest with the fingers resting against the chest as you grip the bar, hands slightly wider than the shoulders and elbows pointing to the front
  • Form a crease in the front of the hips, as you hinge at the hip and begin to sit back. Allow your knees to bend, but minimise forward movement of the knees.
  • As you descend into the movement keep the elbows up and squeeze them towards each other. Keep the weight in the heels and the torso upright.
  • Come to a depth that is comfortable before driving into the heels and returning to a standing position
Muscles Targeted

Legs (quads, glutes)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • Crossed hand grip
  • Allowing only three fingers to support the bar
  • A bar resting on each shoulder
  • 1 bar on one shoulder only (asymmetrical squat)

Back Squats

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Instructions
  • Pick the bar up off the ground with an overhand grip, standing up quickly, cleaning the bar into position in the chest through driving the hips. Bend the knees as push the bar overhead to then bring the bar onto the the top of the shoulders. Alternatively, bring the bar to the shoulders (traps) in a safe manner depending on the weight used.
  • Squeeze the shoulders back slightly and keep the gaze straight ahead as you form a crease in the front of the hips, as you hinge at the hip and begin to sit back into a squat.
  • Allow your knees to bend, but minimise forward movement of the knees.
  • Come to a depth that is comfortable before driving into the heels and returning to a standing position. Ideally stop desc
Muscles Targeted

Posterior chain, glute medius

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Hamstring pain/tightness
Variation
  • Stiff leg
  • opposite handk

Wide Stance Back Squats

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Instructions
  • Pick the bar up off the ground with an overhand grip, standing up quickly, cleaning the bar into position in the chest through driving the hips. Bend the knees as push the bar overhead to then bring the bar onto the the top of the shoulders. Alternatively, bring the bar to the shoulders (traps) in a safe manner depending on the weight used.
  • Squeeze the shoulders back slightly and keep the gaze straight ahead as you form a crease in the front of the hips, as you hinge at the hip and begin to sit back into a squat.
  • Allow your knees to bend, but minimise forward movement of the knees.
  • Come to a depth that is comfortable before driving into the heels and returning to a standing position. Ideally stop desc
Muscles Targeted

Posterior chain, glute medius

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Hamstring pain/tightness
Variation
  • Stiff leg
  • opposite handk

Box Squats

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Instructions
  • Pick the bar up off the ground with an overhand grip, standing up quickly, cleaning the bar into position in the chest through driving the hips. Allow the bar to rest against the top of the chest with the fingers resting against the chest as you grip the bar, hands slightly wider than the shoulders and elbows pointing to the front
  • Have a box behind you, around half a step away approximately knee height
  • Hinge at the hips and begin to sit back on the box, ensuring that your knees do not travel forward.
  • Sit back deep on the box so your knees are above or behind your heels.
  • Press into the heels and drive up to a standing position, leading with the head and minimising the amount of forward lean. Repeat.
Muscles Targeted

Legs (glutes)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • Crossed hand grip
  • Allowing only three fingers to support the bar
  • A bar resting on each shoulder
  • 1 bar on one shoulder only (asymmetrical squat)
  • Overhead
  • Change in box height

Goblet Squat

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Instructions
  • Stand with the feet wider than shoulder width, with the feet turned out slightly.
  • Grip a bar between both hands at the centre of the chest
  • With the weight in the heels, descend into the squat, keeping the torso upright
  • Come into a low position and pause at the bottom contracting the glutes
  • Stand up by leading with the head and minimising hinging at the hip or leaning forward
Muscles Targeted

Glutes

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Adductor strains
Variation
  • One bar in each hand
  • One bar on each shoulder

Jump Back Squats

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Instructions
  • Pick the bar up off the ground with an overhand grip, standing up quickly, cleaning the bar into position in the chest through driving the hips. Bend the knees as push the bar overhead to then bring the bar onto the the top of the shoulders. Alternatively, bring the bar to the shoulders in a safe manner depending on the weight used.
  • Squeeze the shoulders back slightly and keep the gaze straight ahead as you form a crease in the front of the hips, as you hinge at the hip and begin to sit back into a squat.
  • With the weight in the heels sit back until the knees are parallel with the hips (if achievable without leaning forward to far).
  • With the torso upright, drive the hips forward as you transfer weight into the toes and explode upwards, jumping as high as you can
  • Land back in the feet, shift the weight into the heels and repeat
Muscles Targeted

Legs (quads, glutes, calves)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Back pain,
  • shoulder pain
  • calf pain
  • knee pain
Variation
  • Finish the jump in the low squat position

Split Squat

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Instructions
  • Place one leg on a bench (toes or top of foot) and shuffle the other foot far forward so that the knee is well behind the heel, and a bar across the shoulders, hands gripping the ends of the bars, palms forward
  • Push into the rear foot, and with the weight in the front heel, begin to lower the rear knee to the floor
  • Ensure the torso remains upright, and the chest high, keeping the rear hip forward. Notice the tension come into the rear hip, descending to a point where you can maintain form.
  • Push into the front heel and the rear foot and push up to the starting position
Muscles Targeted

Legs (quads)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
Variation
  • Bars at the side
  • Bar overhead

Back lunges

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck as you take a long step back. Step far enough back so that when you perform the exercise the knee does not shift forwards
  • Bring the rear knee towards the floor ensuring the torso remains upright and the front knee stays still above the heel
  • Push off the front foot, without leaning, and return the foot back to a standing position
Muscles Targeted

Legs

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
Variation
  • Overhead lunge
  • Perform without descending the knee

Back lunges with Twist

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck as you take a long step back. Step far enough back so that when you perform the exercise the knee does not shift forwards
  • Bring the rear knee towards the floor ensuring the torso remains upright and the front knee stays still above the heel
  • Push off the front foot, without leaning, and return the foot back to a standing position
Muscles Targeted

Legs

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
Variation
  • Overhead lunge
  • Perform without descending the knee

Front lunges

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck as you take a long step forward. Step far enough forward so that when you perform the exercise the knee does not shift forwards
  • Bring the rear knee towards the floor ensuring the torso remains upright and the front knee stays still above the heel
  • Push off the front foot, without leaning, and return the foot back to a standing position
Muscles Targeted

Legs

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
Variation
  • Overhead lunge

Jump lunges front

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck as you take a long step forward. Step far enough forward so that when you perform the exercise the knee of the front leg does not shift forwards
  • Bring the rear knee towards the floor ensuring the torso remains upright and the front knee stays still above the heel
  • Taking note of the position of the front leg, explode off the ground and switch legs mid-air to land with the opposite leg in front, ensuring the same distance between the legs as the setup position
Muscles Targeted

Legs

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
Variation
  • No switch mid-air – i.e. perform continuous reps on one side before changing

Jump lunges Back

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck as you take a long step back avoiding letting the torso lean forward too much, and the hip rotating back. Step far enough forward so that when you perform the exercise the knee of the front leg does not shift forwards
  • Bring the rear knee towards the floor ensuring the torso remains upright and the front knee stays still above the heel
  • Taking note of how far back the rear leg is, explode off the ground and switch legs mid-air to land with the opposite leg behind you, ensuring the same distance between the legs as the setup position
Muscles Targeted

Legs

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
Variation
  • No switch mid-air – i.e. perform continuous reps on one side before changing

Walking lunges back

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck as you take a long step back. Step far enough back so that when you perform the exercise the knee does not shift forwards
  • Bring the rear knee towards the floor ensuring the torso remains upright and the front knee stays still above the heel
  • Push off the front foot, without leaning, and in one motion bring the front foot back under the body to lunge on the other side
Muscles Targeted

Legs

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
Variation
  • Bring the foot back under the body to stop in double leg stance before repeating on other side
  • Overhead lunge
  • Perform without descending the knee

Walking Lunges

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck as you take a long step forward. Step far enough forward so that when you perform the exercise the knee does not shift forwards
  • Bring the rear knee towards the floor ensuring the torso remains upright and the front knee stays still above the heel
  • Bringing the weight into the front heel try to keep the front knee bent as you step the rear foot all the way through to lunge on the other side. Try to keep the body as low as possible and feel the glute contract.
Muscles Targeted

Legs, glutes

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
Variation
  • Bring the foot back under the body to stop in double leg stance before repeating on other side
  • Overhead lunge
  • Perform without descending the knee

Overhead Walking Lunges

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Instructions
  • Press a bar overhead from a standing position. Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck as you take a long step forward. Step far enough forward so that when you perform the exercise the knee does not shift forwards
  • Bring the rear knee towards the floor ensuring the torso remains upright and the front knee stays still above the heel. Ensure that the bar stays pressed overhead with the arms straight.
  • Bringing the weight into the front heel try to keep the front knee bent as you step the rear foot all the way through to lunge on the other side. Try to keep the body as low as possible and feel the glute contract.
Muscles Targeted

Legs, glutes

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
Variation
  • Static position
  • Walking backwards

Calf Raises

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck.
  • Come up onto the toes ensuring that you place equal weight into the big and little toe
  • Return to the start position keeping the foot straight
Muscles Targeted

Calves

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Plantar fasciitis
Variation
  • Eccentric calf raises
  • Seated with bar on the knees

Overhead Step Bar

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Instructions
  • Hold a bar firmly in each hand, with the arms pressed overhead.
  • Place one leg on a box or step. Ensure the hips are tucked under, and leading with the chest, step onto the box.
  • As you step raise the opposite knee into the air. Pause here, and lower back to the starting position slowly
Muscles Targeted

Legs, glutes

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
  • Major hip asymmetry, rotation
Variation
  • Asymmetrical step up
  • Bars at the side

Step Up/ Single leg row

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Instructions
  • Hold a bar firmly in each hand, with the arms at the sides
  • Place one leg on a box or step. Ensure the hips are tucked under, and leading with the chest, step onto the box.
  • As you step raise the opposite knee into the air. Begin to extend this leg behind you as you balance on one leg and lean forward until the chest and rear leg are parallel to the ground, letting the arms extend so the bars are also parallel to the ground.
  • From here perform a row by bringing the elbows behind the rib cage
Muscles Targeted

Legs, glutes, back

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
  • Major hip asymmetry, rotation
  • Shoulder pain
Variation
  • Asymmetrical step up
  • Bars at the side

Sumo Squats

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Instructions
  • Set the bar across the back of the shoulders so they sit comfortably
  • Grip the bar firmly and keep the chin tucked back towards the neck and step the feet out wide with the toes pointing out slightly
  • Keeping the weight in the heels bend at the waist and sit back over the heels into a low squat, keeping the torso as upright as possible
  • Come into a squat depth that allows you to maintain form without collapsing one or both knees
  • Push into the heels, contract the glutes and stand up leading with your head and not your hips
Muscles Targeted

Legs, glutes,

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Knee pain
  • Patella tracking issues
  • Major hip asymmetry, rotation
Variation
  • Overhead sumo squat
  • Bar at the front
  • Bar held in both hands

Bridges

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Instructions
  • Laying on your back, knees bent and feet flat on the ground, place the bar across your hips, securing it with your hands, elbows on the ground
  • Slide the shoulders along the ground slightly towards the feet and press into the heels to lift the hips high off the ground.
  • Keeping the weight in the heels, slowly roll the spine back onto the ground
Muscles Targeted

Legs, glutes,

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Back pain
  • Knee pain
Variation
  • Toes off the ground
  • Single leg

Crunches (Bar in front squat position)

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Instructions
  • Laying on your back, knees bent pointing to the ceiling, feet off the ground and shins parallel to the floor.
  • Hold the bar in the front rack position across the chest, shoulder height with the hands crossing each other securing the bar into the chest, elbows pointed towards the knees.
  • Take the chin to the chest and without lower body movement exhale and contract the abdominals with the goal to get the elbows to touch the knees
  • Inhale back down to the floor
Muscles Targeted

Core

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • Alternate moving toward each knee.
  • Straighten leg on the eccentric phase maintain heel height 2-3 inches above the ground

TB Sit Ups

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Instructions
  • Lay on your back with your knees slightly bent, and a bar against your chest
  • With a firm grip on the bar, extend the arms and press the bar in front of the chest
  • Push the feet into the ground, and with a very slight pull in the heels, lift the torso off the ground, as you do so extend the arms and press the bar away from the chest
  • Ensure the core is engaged and the lower back neutral as you descend back to the starting position, drawing the bar back to the chest
Muscles Targeted

Core

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • One bar in each hand

TB Press Sit Ups

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Instructions
  • Lay on your back with your knees slightly bent, and a bar against your chest
  • With a firm grip on the bar, extend the arms and press the bar in front of the chest
  • Push the feet into the ground, and with a very slight pull in the heels, lift the torso off the ground. as you do so keep the arms extended and let the bar come into an overhead position
  • Ensure the shoulders are depressed away from the ears, and with the core engaged, return the torso back to the ground, with the bar remaining pressed away from the chest
Muscles Targeted

Core

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • One bar in each hand

TB Leg Raises

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Instructions
  • Lay on your back with a bar against the chest and legs straight
  • Extend the arms to press the bar away from the chest
  • Inhale and lift the legs away from the floor, bringing the shins towards the bar. aim to keep the legs as straight as possible, and avoid initiating all of the movement from the lower back
  • Exhale slowly and forcefully as you bring the legs back to the floor, keeping the lower back on teh ground
Muscles Targeted

Core (hip flexors)

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • Press the bar between reps

Russian Twist

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Instructions
  • Sit with the knees bent at around 90 degrees, with the torso slightly leaning back at at angle where you can still maintain a straight spine. Have a bar resting on the hips
  • Lift the feet off the floor until the shins are almost parallel with the ground of possible, pressing the feet together
  • Press the bar slightly away from the body and twist the torso sid eto side letting the bar drop to each side as you do so. Keep the legs raised in the centreline and the back straight
Muscles Targeted

Core

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • Straighten the legs between reps

Russian Twist with Legs Raised

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Instructions
  • Sit with the knees bent at around 90 degrees, with the torso slightly leaning back at at angle where you can still maintain a straight spine. Have a bar resting on the hips
  • Lift the feet off the floor until the shins are almost parallel with the ground of possible, pressing the feet together
  • Press the bar slightly away from the body and twist the torso sid eto side letting the bar drop to each side as you do so. Keep the legs raised in the centreline and the back straight
Muscles Targeted

Core

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • Straighten the legs between reps

Man Makers

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Instructions
  • With a bar in each hand start in a high push up position. Depending on the thickness of the bar, either place the knuckles on the ground, fingers curled around the bar, or grip the bar firmly. Either way, ensure the wrist is straight.
  • Have the feet splayed out wider than shoulder width, to a point where you can stabilise the entire body (specifically the opposing hip) as you bend one elbow and draw the bar up towards the body.
  • Bring the bar back to the ground and descend into a push up
  • Jump the feet forward between the hands and come into a low squat position
  • Press the bars over head as you jump up straightening the body and the arms. Use the drive of the hips to help press the bars overhead, and keep the end of the bars pointing towards the front
  • Descend through the low squat position and place the bars on the ground, jumping back into a high push-up position ensuring the hips don’t drop
Muscles Targeted

Everything!

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Shoulder impingement
  • Hip flexor impingemen
Variation
  • Jump straight back to the low push-up position

V Ups

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Instructions
  • Lay on your back with your legs straight, and arms straight above the head, gripping a bar
  • With the legs and arms as straight as possible, sit up to bring the feet and bar towards each other. Aim to have the tailbone on the floor, and as much of the lower back away from the floor as possible. Look to keep the back straight and the belly firm
  • Lower the legs and arms to the floor ensuring that both make contact with the floor at the same time
Muscles Targeted

Core

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
Variation
  • Use one arm
  • Alternate sides
  • Use one leg
  • Pulse at the top

Plank

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Instructions
  • Laying on your stomach, place a bar along the back aligning with the spine if possible. This will allow you to ensure alignment throughout the exercise, but depends on individual anatomy
  • Come onto your elbows ensuring the back is straight and shoulders are drawn back
  • Push into your toes and move the head slightly forward, feeling the lower abdominals contract as you exhale
Muscles Targeted

Everything!

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder pain
Variation
  • One leg lifted
  • Straight arms

Plank Bar Passes

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Instructions
  • Come into a plank position with the arms straight, ensuring shoulders are drawn back and lower back is braced. Have a bar on the outside of the hand on one side
  • With the opposite side hand, reach under the body and take hold of the bar and bring it to the outside of the opposite side. Repeat side to side
Muscles Targeted

Core

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Shoulder pain
  • Wrist pain
Variation
  • Push up between sides

Overhead March

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Instructions
  • Stand with the feet slightly shoulder width, toes pointed forwards.
  • Press the bar overhead with arms behind the ears
  • Tuck the hips under hard until you feel the abs engage.
  • Begin to walk, lifting the knees high and placing them down deliberately. Ensure the hips stay tucked under and the abs are engaged
Muscles Targeted

Everything!

Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Shoulder impingement
Variation
  • Walking without raising knees

Turkish Get Up

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Instructions
  • Lay on the floor with a bar pressed away from the chest in the right hand. Place the left arm out on the floor at around 45 degrees with the left leg away from the body at the same angle. Have the right leg bent with the knee pointing towards the ceiling
  • Press the right arm to the ceiling as you roll onto the left elbow
  • Straighten the left arm as you lift the chest
  • Push into the right foot and left hand as you lift the hips away from the floor
  • Bend the left leg and place the left knee 45 degrees, and hip width away from the right heel=push the hips forward
  • Bring the left hand off the ground and straighten the left foot behind the right knee, prepping for a lunge
  • Bring the weight into the right foot and step up from a lunge to standing
  • Reverse the movements
  • NB-keep the right knee and hand pointed directly to the ceiling throughout
Muscles Targeted
  • Knee to hip fascia lines
  • Shoulder stability
Common Potential Red Flags
  • Lower back pain
  • Shoulder impingement
  • Hip flexor impingement
  • Wrist issues

Running

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Instructions
  • Hold a bar in one hand, gripping firmly
  • Practice the arm pumping movement of running, ensuring the bar travels in a straight line, thumb pointing straight ahead. Keep the shoulders back, chest up and draw the elbow back
  • Run, changing sides when the grip fatigues or as time dictates
Muscles Targeted
  • Grip strength
  • Neuromuscular running drill
Common Potential Red Flags
  • Carpel tunnel
Variation
  • Both hands