The center of all power and strength in the human body originates in the core.
Focusing strength-training on the core is of great importance. The core consists of the following muscle groups: abdominals, obliques, erectors of lower back, glutes, upper quadriceps, upper hamstrings, hip flexors and groin area. The more “quality” training performed, focusing on this area, the more potential the bootcamper has to transfer the training to their everyday life or to their competitive sport of choice.
15 seconds row the boat (right)
15 seconds row the boat (left)
7 second rest
15 seconds seated overhead strikes (right)
15 seconds seated overhead strikes (left)
Repeat for 1-3 rounds based upon your current conditioning level.
DO NOT underestimate the effect of this combo on your core. It’s better do too little at first until you build up strength, balance, conditioning. Key points to remember during these 2 core hammer exercises:
- The further the resistance is moved, during the exercise, the more athletic and beneficial the exercise is.
- The faster the resistance is moved (with proper form), the more athletic and beneficial the lift is.
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P.S. I’m using a standard sledgehammer and a core hammer in the video above. The core hammer is safer in a group setting than a sledgehammer. You can find out more about the core hammer here
What do you think of when someone tells you they’ve been using a sledgehammer in their fitness routine?
If you’re like most, you might think of someone using a sledgehammer to strike a tractor tire.
A few years back at my bootcamp, that’s what we did. We used a sledgehammer to strike a tire. Since then, I’ve discovered that striking a tractor tire is merely the beginning of what’s possible when using a sledgehammer.
You see, I love using a sledgehammer in my training. Sledgehammers are:
You probably already have a sledgehammer or can quickly get one at your local hardware store. They’re easy to find and are cost effective.
You can keep your sledgehammer in your garage or take it to the park in the trunk of your car. With proper care, they will last a lifetime. They are built to last.
With proper training, you will build muscle, lose fat (with sensible nutrition), improve athleticism, hand – eye coordination, balance, flexibility and foot work. It’s unique, it’s fun and I’ve been using sledgehammers in my training for the past couple of years.
benefits of sledgehammer training
6 Ways Sledgehammer Training Will Help You Build Muscle, Lose Fat And Get Into Your All Time Best Shape! If it will help me win Austin’s Fittest Man Over 50 this year (2015), it’ll help your bootcampers become fitter.
- The Sledgehammer is asymmetrical which lends itself to a unique blend of balance (and imbalance) when used in exercise.
- There’s a big gravitational pull on the heavy side of the sledgehammer which is a totally different feel unlike anything else.
- Due to this gravitational pull, your core and the muscles on the other side of the body MUST compensate by working harder and unknowingly.
- 10-11+ calories a minute. That’s how many calories you can expect to burn as you build up to max intensity. This amount is on par (or more) than cross country skiing, mountain biking, rowing, swimming and elliptical training.
- Less abdominal work! Forget about doing hundreds of boring sit ups and crunches. If done intensely enough, sledgehammer training cuts down on the need for long abdominal workouts as the core muscles will be completely shot. During my research, I came across a quote from an author who said that French coal miners had the best abs due to their consistent use of sledgehammers.
- Strength training. The sledgehammer is a strength training tool. You will work every muscle in your body and you will burn calories long after the workout is over due to EPOC (excess post-oxygen consumption). This is a secret weapon that experts use to burn more calories all day long. More muscle – even an additional couple of pounds of muscle – burn more calories. Include strength training in your fitness routine and you’ll burn more fat during the course of the day. Even while you’re sitting.
technology has made the sledgehammer even better!
What if you took a fiberglass handle and wrapped the grip with a snug rubber grip? And then, what if you attached a round 8 pound rubber ball on the end? The folks at Most-Fit.com have done exactly this and created The Core Hammer!
It’s safer than a metal sledgehammer, it’s made especially for fitness, and you can do 101 exercises with it including strength AND cardio based exercises. Now if you don’t know where to start with your sledgehammer/core hammer training, I’ve got you covered!
Core hammer training is what helped me win the title of “Austin’s Fittest Man Over 50” – 2015! Here’s the video from that event. Hundreds showed up to compete for the title. This competition is now in its fourth year and it gets bigger and better each year.
So who better to show you some quick workouts that you can do at home, at the park or just about anywhere?
Let’s “Smash Monday” together and include some sledgehammer/core hammer training into our workout routines. Each Monday for the next 4 weeks, I’ll have a quick core hammer workout that’s fitting for beginners, intermediates and advanced fitness fanatics. If I do my job right, you’ll begin to understand the reasons why you must include this type of “asymmetrical’ training regularly into your routine.
If you’re on social media, take a pic of yourself or your bootcampers doing the workout or after with your choice of hammers (sledgehammer or core hammer) and post the pic on social media using the hashtag #smashmonday. This way we can see those of you who are doing these workouts and give you a shout out! You don’t have to put anything on social media – it’s simply a fun option.
Here’s your first workout! Watch the video first, it’s short and then you’ll hear me explain the details of it afterwards. Let’s get SMASHING!
Smash Monday! Core Hammer Workout # 1
- Warm up for 3-5 minutes doing a general warm up.
- Set a timer for 30 seconds work / 7 seconds rest
- Beginners do 1-2 rounds using step ups, box squats or body weight squats instead of box jumps.
- Intermediates do 3- 5 rounds. Adjust box from 20″ to 24″.
- Advanced do 3 -5 rounds at 60 seconds per round instead of 30 seconds per round. Adjust box from 20″ to 24″ or 30″.
This is an 8lb core hammer that I’m using in this video. This type of training is not about the weight. At some point, too much weight can be dangerous and can cause injury. Beginners should start with a light core hammer or sledgehammer and work up to the next poundage. This is a conditioning drill that will give your bootcampers a great quick workout doing something NEW! You can make this a station and have people cycle through it. All you need is one sledgehammer or core hammer – they’ll build athleticism, hand eye coordination, balance and agility. Do right handed, over handed or left handed strikes. Mix up the hand placement as you see fit always aiming for balance on each side of the body.
Austin’s Fittest Man Over 50 – 2015
P.S. I’m running a sale on The Sledgehammer Workout for a few days starting NOW. Check it out here!
Find out how fellow bootcamper, Leon Melnicenko went from running a bootcamp of about 7 people to exploding it to over 70 people by just having fun!
When you come across a quality resource, snap it up. You’ll refer back to it over and over again and won’t have to waste time trying to come up with your own games and workouts at the last minute.
I am proud to give this new resource a big thumbs up! Click here to find out more and to see all of the current bonuses!
P.S. I believe in practicing what I preach. Am I as fit as I think I am? Find out how I did competing against the FITTEST people in Austin, Texas on June 13th at http://scottyorkfitness.com/new-challenge-operation-austin-fittest-2015/
Not only do I have a little bootcamp at my church, I work as an outdoor educator with a year round camp and retreat center. I know you like wacky fitness games as I have the ebook of yours (Bootcamp Fitness Games). Here is one (Rubber Chicken Baseball) that I do at the camp and then used it for bootcamp.”
WACKY IS RIGHT
I’ve gotten a lot of fun feedback from those of you who have been running your own bootcamps over the years. You’ve told me how including fun games in your bootcamp is now a must and that the biggest rule that we’ve all learned is to KEEP IT SIMPLE.
We’ve learned not to get too complicated with exercises or rules. Keep the activities short, keep the energy high. Know when to move on to the next game or activity – always leave your people wanting more, not wondering when it’s going to be over 🙂
Having said that, here is ..,
RUBBER CHICKEN BASEBALL
(Anne says “at bootcamp we used a medicine ball.”)
HOW TO PLAY:
- Two teams of equal number.
- Team A will line up one behind another and Team B is just together.
- Hand Team A a rubber chicken or med ball. A designated player from Team A is to throw it as far as he/she can.
- Team B is to run to where it landed then line up and begin passing it over under over under to the end of line (or side to side as shown below)
- Meanwhile Team A has made a circle and someone is running around it and slaps the one hand that is held out. “One” is yelled and they keep running around and keep counting the runs, example – “Two”, “Three”, “Four”, etc. UNTIL they hear “Chicken” yelled out by the other team.
- When Team B has reached the last player, they then throw the object (med ball or rubber chicken) as far as possible.
- Team A must all run to it line up and pass over under or side to side and back until the end of the line is reached.
- While Team B is now running around the circle and counting their runs until Team A yells “Chicken” throws it and so on.
- A new runner should be selected each time and the runs are cumulative.
- The game ends at a set # of runs or when time is called.
The funny thing about it is that if you don’t say anything, most groups make a big circle like holding hands when they could just bunch up in a tight one.
We use this as a team builder for a low challenge course at camp then talk about who was the leader, the importance of communication. My ladies at church were breathing hard and laughing.
Hope it makes sense and maybe you will try it sometime. Good for all ages and fitness levels.
Now can you imagine being out at a park playing this game? You’re throwing a rubber chicken around, running, circling up, counting and then yelling “Chicken”!
That’ll keep the neighbors talking… 🙂
Amazon has rubber chickens just in case you can’t find one. Currently, their around $6.00 and shipping is free.
Have a great day!