Extreme Core Workout for Peak Sports Performance

January 7, 2013 | Jim Carpentier

Must See Strength Training Videos

Your daily activities constantly recruit your core muscles. From your abdominal, gluteal, lower and middle back muscles and groin to your inner and outer thighs, you are engaging these muscles whenever you twist, turn, lunge laterally, move forward, reach overhead, catch a ball or bend down to grab a book from the bottom shelf. This is why for athletes a powerful core is essential. (See How Strong is Your Core?)

Following a dynamic upper- and lower body warm-up, try this challenging workout a few times weekly on non-consecutive days. It will strengthen all of your core muscles and lower your risk of injury during practices and games.

Alternate Cable Chops and Prone Planks

Targeting the obliques, upper and lower abdominal muscles. ( See it in action: Exercise of the Week: Cable Rotational Chops.)

  • Start in athletic stance facing cable machine
  • Grab overhead rope handle
  • Using 80% of RM resistance, explosively pull cable down to right side near waist, back up to start position, then down to  left side—for 10 reps
  • Without rest, place feet on bench and assume prone plank position on forearms
  • Hold for 45 to 60 seconds
  • Repeat cable chops/plank sequence two more sets

Side Lunges and Ball Twists

Strengthening for the glutes, inner/outer thighs and obliques.

  • Hold a 15- to 20-pound medicine ball at chest level with arms extended
  • Lunge laterally with right foot and simultaneously explosively rotate ball to right
  • Drag left leg back toward right and return ball to start position
  • Continue for four more reps
  • Switch to lunging laterally with ball rotations to left side for five reps
  • Rest 30 seconds and repeat sequence two more sets

Supermen and Side Planks

Supermen strengthen the lower back while Side Planks target the obliques. (See Ronald Forbes Alternating Superman.)

  • Lie face-down on mat in prone position with arms extended in front of head
  • Raise arms and legs off mat (stomach stays on mat)
  • Hold three seconds
  • Return to start position
  • Repeat nine more times
  • Immediately rotate to right side and rest right forearm on mat
  • Lift hips off mat and raise left hand overhead
  • Hold for 45-60 seconds
  • Rotate to left side and repeat
  • Rest 30 seconds
  • Repeat supermen/Side Plank sequence two more times.
Topics: CORE
Jim Carpentier
- Jim Carpentier, CSCS, is a certified strength and conditioning specialist, New Jersey-licensed massage therapist, and a health/fitness writer. He currently serves as Associate Health and...
Jim Carpentier
- Jim Carpentier, CSCS, is a certified strength and conditioning specialist, New Jersey-licensed massage therapist, and a health/fitness writer. He currently serves as Associate Health and...
Must See
Derrick Rose Explains How He Stays Positive Derrick Rose Explains How He Stays Positive
Views: 7,181,965
NFL Wide Receiver Randall Cobb Outworks Everyone NFL Wide Receiver Randall Cobb Outworks Everyone
Views: 33,450,082
Why NFL Wide Receiver DeSean Jackson Counts His Blessings Why NFL Wide Receiver DeSean Jackson Counts His Blessings
Views: 7,508,375

Featured Videos

Kevin Love's In-Season Basketball Workout Kevin Love's In-Season Basketball Workout Views: 1,015,900
A Day in the Life With Kansas City Chiefs Tight End Travis Kelce A Day in the Life With Kansas City Chiefs Tight End Travis Kelce Views: 15,235
Path to the Pros 2015: Shaq Thompson Path to the Pros 2015: Shaq Thompson Views: 69,996
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Two-Ball Dribbling Drill With John Wall Two-Ball Dribbling Drill With John Wall
Views: 3,362,659
Paul Rabil's Box Jumps Paul Rabil's Box Jumps
Views: 851,294
Roy Hibbert 540 lbs Deadlift Roy Hibbert 540 lbs Deadlift
Views: 1,576,462
Dribbling Drills for Tighter Handles Dribbling Drills for Tighter Handles
Views: 4,332,938
Ohio State Football Open Field Plyo Drill Ohio State Football Open Field Plyo Drill
Views: 9,498,992

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like
The Most American Workout Ever

The Most American Workout Ever

8-Exercise Advanced Chest and Back Workout

8-Exercise Advanced Chest and Back Workout

How to Recover From a Soccer Game or Workout

How to Recover From a Soccer Game or Workout

Advanced Anti-Rotation Core Strengthening Exercises

Advanced Anti-Rotation Core Strengthening Exercises

Improve Your Power With These Hardcore Methods

Improve Your Power With These Hardcore Methods

Use Sled Pushes to Increase Speed, Strength and Power

Use Sled Pushes to Increase Speed, Strength and Power

3 Keys to a Solid Squat Setup

3 Keys to a Solid Squat Setup

Austen Lane's Complete NFL Workout

Austen Lane's Complete NFL Workout

Increase Athletic Strength with Rotational Bodyweight Training

Increase Athletic Strength with Rotational Bodyweight Training

Use Wave Loading to Take Your Strength to the Next Level

Use Wave Loading to Take Your Strength to the Next Level

How to Use the Pallof Press for an Iron Core

How to Use the Pallof Press for an Iron Core

Keep Your Workouts Simple for Better Results

Keep Your Workouts Simple for Better Results

Why Every Athlete Should Do Farmer's Walks

Why Every Athlete Should Do Farmer's Walks

Know Your Row: The Pros and Cons of 8 Different Back Exercises

Know Your Row: The Pros and Cons of 8 Different Back Exercises

How to Fix Back Rounding When Deadlifting

How to Fix Back Rounding When Deadlifting

5 Training Ideas You Should Steal From the NFL's Best

5 Training Ideas You Should Steal From the NFL's Best

How to Perform the Farmer's Walk with Dumbbells

How to Perform the Farmer's Walk with Dumbbells

Speed Drill of the Day: Reverse Lunges

Speed Drill of the Day: Reverse Lunges

Everything You Need to Know About Using Farmer's Walk Handles

Everything You Need to Know About Using Farmer's Walk Handles

Why Your Instagram Box Jump Isn't That Impressive

Why Your Instagram Box Jump Isn't That Impressive

German Volume Training: How to Pack on Muscle Mass

German Volume Training: How to Pack on Muscle Mass

How to Get More Out of the Dumbbell Press

How to Get More Out of the Dumbbell Press

Battle Rope Workout That Will Get You Shredded

Battle Rope Workout That Will Get You Shredded

Duncan Keith's Stanley Cup MVP Training

Duncan Keith's Stanley Cup MVP Training

Build Explosive Strength with This Olympic Weightlifting Program

Build Explosive Strength with This Olympic Weightlifting Program

3 Barbell-Only, Full-Body Workout Programs for Any Fitness Goal

3 Barbell-Only, Full-Body Workout Programs for Any Fitness Goal

Is CrossFit Appropriate for Basketball Players?

Is CrossFit Appropriate for Basketball Players?

Are You Loading Barbells Wrong?

Are You Loading Barbells Wrong?

Build Strength with Kettlebell Sandbags

Build Strength with Kettlebell Sandbags

Why Everything You Know About Core Training is Wrong

Why Everything You Know About Core Training is Wrong

Wrestlers: Improve Double-Leg Takedowns With Sled Pushes

Wrestlers: Improve Double-Leg Takedowns With Sled Pushes

A Simple 6-Exercise Core Workout

A Simple 6-Exercise Core Workout

Strengthen Your Core With 2 Simple Anti-Rotational Exercises

Strengthen Your Core With 2 Simple Anti-Rotational Exercises

Why the Clean Pull is Perfect for Athletes

Why the Clean Pull is Perfect for Athletes

How to Build Arm Strength for Baseball Before Your Season

How to Build Arm Strength for Baseball Before Your Season

8 Ways to Use a Weight Vest in Your Workouts

8 Ways to Use a Weight Vest in Your Workouts

8 Cures for a Weak Grip

8 Cures for a Weak Grip

Abby Wambach's Strength and Speed Workout

Abby Wambach's Strength and Speed Workout

Build Muscle With the 2-Second Pause Workout Program

Build Muscle With the 2-Second Pause Workout Program

YardBarker