Versatile exercise equipment is a hot trend for athletes, and the Valslide fits right in. Celebrity trainer Valerie Waters invented the Valslide because of her deep experience with slideboard exercises. Slideboards, a tool most professional athletes use, provide a low-friction surface that allows you to slide into various positions with control. This challenges your body’s stabilizing muscles—abs, low back, groin and hips—to improve your ability to absorb force, deliver a blow and change direction.
The Valslide allows athletes to perform sliding exercises without bulky and expensive slideboards. “Once you know the basics, it’s like the TRX, you can think of a million things to do,” Waters says.
The Valslide is essentially two plastic ovals that reduce friction on the ground when you apply a load with your feet or hands, allowing you to slide your arms or legs. Waters has designed several exercises that use the Valslide, focusing on the legs, chest and abs; but you can add it to exercises you already perform. One of her favorites is renowned trainer Mike Boyle’s Body Saw, a modified Plank that allows you to slide with a foot on each Valslide oval, while rocking back and forth. Waters says the unstable nature of the product “keeps your core engaged, so you are working other muscles that you may not even realize you are working.”
An entire team of 20 can be outfitted with Valslides [$30] for the price of one slideboard. According to Waters, “This one item will now open up hundreds of new exercises or variations of what you are already doing.”