Flexibility is an extremely essential and often overlooked element of an effective training routine. Integrating slow and controlled lengthening movements into your workout regimen will increase flexibility, promote recovery and help build a stronger mind-body connection.
We all know that training time is hard to work into a busy schedule, so efficiency is key. Focusing on lengthening movements during a total-body strength training circuit will help us kill two birds with one sweat session.
Try this core and flexibility workout featuring the SandBell, which uses shifting sand weight to engage your core and work all of the stabilizers that support your larger muscles, to lengthen and strengthen from head to toe. Just holding the SandBell will improve your grip strength, build your forearm muscles and promote mind-body connectivity. Adding this safe and functional training tool to a flexibility routine is a great way to pump up your heart rate, challenge your muscles and keep your mind engaged.
- Perform 10 reps of each movement (or as indicated), with little to no rest between moves, to complete one circuit.
- Repeat for four total circuits with little to no rest between each circuit.
- For each movement, choose a SandBell weight that challenges you, but with which you can perform the indicated number of reps.
- Stand with straight legs and strong posture, with a SandBell in each hand.
- Bend at the waist, keeping your back strong and straight, and reach the SandBells down and back to your heels, keeping legs and arms straight.
- In one fluid motion, circle straight arms forward and up to stretch overhead, then rotate shoulders and arms out to form a “T” to repeat the circular pattern.
Leg Raise and Reach
- Lie with your back flat on the floor, legs out straight and arms straight out behind, you gripping the SandBell in both hands.
- Flex your feet so your toes are pointing toward you and lift your legs straight up with feet towards ceiling, engaging your quads and core, and keeping your lower back flat on the floor.
- At the same time, reach the SandBell straight up toward the ceiling, lifting shoulder blades slightly off the floor.
- Return to flat position and repeat.
- Stand with feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, gripping the SandBell in two hands.
- Rotate through your core, bend at the waist and reach the SandBell down to your left foot, keeping your back flat and core engaged.
- Then explode up and toward the right, reaching the SandBell overhead as you twist through your core. Make sure your left heel releases as you twist.
- Perform 10 repetitions on one side, then repeat on the opposite side by reaching to your right foot and exploding up to the left.
Lunge and Push
- Stand with feet hip-width apart, gripping the SandBell in both hands at your chest.
- Step forward with your left leg into a lunge, and push the SandBell forward out in front of you at chest height until your arms are straight.
- Return to starting position and repeat on the right leg.
- Alternate legs, performing 10 reps on each side.
- Start in a plank position and bend your knees 90 degrees, hovering them off the ground, the SandBell resting on the ground between your hands.
- Grip the SandBell in your left hand and rotate to your left, lifting your left arm with the SandBell towards the sky and kicking your right leg underneath you as you rotate.
- Return to starting position, switching the SandBell into your right hand and repeating by rotating to the right, reaching your right arm to the sky and kicking through your left leg.
- Alternate sides and perform 10 reps on each side.
- Lie flat on your back, gripping the SandBell to your chest.
- Push the SandBell up, extending your arms.
- Move the SandBell to your right hand, then reach your right arm out straight to rest on the ground while crossing your right leg over your left across your body.
- Look to your right and hold the stretch for 30 seconds, then repeat on the opposite side.
- Hold for 30 seconds on each side.
Video credit: Courtesy of Hyperwear
Photo credit: undrey, Adobe Stock