Importance of Core Training
Anyone who has ever played baseball can tell you how important the core is in performing basic baseball movements such as swinging and throwing. A strong core is critical to performing optimally and staying healthy.
How to Train the Core
Baseball players should build a strong core through max effort squats, deadlifts and bench press variations (for some). Various rowing exercises along with 1 arm dumbbell benching and alternating dumbbell benching will get the job done.
Bodyweight training including pushups, pull-ups, hand walking will also play a critical role in developing a strong core.
Direct core work should be added at the end of workouts or in between sets. I recommend you do direct core training 2-3 x a week.
What Exercises Should you Choose?
Sledgehammer Training– Aside from being an awesome conditioning tool, sledgehammer training will kill your core.
Gymnastic Rings– These are a great tool for forcing your core to stabilize. My favorite exercises with the rings are plank variations, ab fallouts. Any exercise on these rings will rock your core. The video below can be done on gymnastic rings.
Power Wheel – Like the gymnastic rings, the power wheel is great for forcing your core to stabilize. Try hand walking for a set distance. The goal is to keep the core tight and not wobble from side to side. Ab rollouts are another favorite
Mixed Kettlebell Carries– I learned these from my mentor Zach Even-Esh. Our athletes at the Underground Strength Gym perform kettlebell carries as part of their warm-up. You can also use them toward the end of your workout. There are many different positions you can use for this so be creative. For example, hold 1 kettlebell, or dumbbell, overhead while holding the other 1 by your side. Try walking for 100ft or so.
Medicine ball work-Baseball players should focus of explosive throws and slams. Depending on your goal, medicine ball throws can be performed right after a dynamic warm up to excite the CNS and also to train explosiveness. You can also perform them at the end of your workout as a conditioning tool.
- Train your core through big compound movements and bodyweight movements.
- Addition core work should be added to your training at the end of your workouts or in between sets 2-3 x a week. Pick 1 or 2 exercises from the above list and perform multiple sets of max reps or a set distance.
- As with all assistance work, you should not go balls out. Leave reps in the tank and train smart!
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