D3 Multisport: Core Strength Program, Part V
The following is my own personal core strength workout. It’s painful but it gets results. If you want to be ripped and generate more power in the pool and on the roads this workout is for you.Most of these exercises are done with the Fit Ball [FB] a.k.a. Swiss ball, big ball, or Physio-ball.

A. Days per week: 2-3 (max)
B. For beginners, I recommend doing one set of 5-15 reps.
C. I would start with Part I one day, Part II the next scheduled day etc.
D. After you accomplish C, you can move on to doing Parts I & II and then Parts I, II, & III in the same day.
E. Once you can accomplish D then you can add multiple sets.
F. Once you accomplish E, you can move to Core IV, V and VI.
G. Go easy – these can hurt you for a few days. 
H. Quality over quantity!

Exercise 1: Russian Twist on FB Repetitions:
12-15Movement: Lying with your back on the Fitball, and your feet firmly planted on the ground, rotate a medicine ball (MB), from left to right and back again. One full repetition is a full cycle of Middle, Left, Middle, Right, Middle, Left. To increase difficulty you can use a heavier MB and/or increase the speed of the exercise. 

Exercise 2: Plank with movement
Repetitions: 45 seconds (s) – 2 minutes (m)Movement: This is a tough one. You start out in a plank position with your elbows under you. Keep the elbows about 6” apart. Try to keep the shoulder blades together with no curve. Really flex your stomach region, you will feel this. Keep your back straight and your hips up. To make this even more challenging, try to keep moving your elbows out 2” every 15s or so. Another challenge would be to lift your leg off the ground behind you or out to the side as I demonstrate in the video. Your body should be shaking on this one. If not, then move your hips up a bit.

Exercise 3:  Squat RowsRepetitions:
10-15Movement: Using a band or cable machine in the gym, you’ll squat while your pull (row) the band toward you. As you come back out of your squat you can let up on the tension on the band. 

Exercise 4: X-Band Walk
Repetitions: 12-20 steps in both directionsMovement: First, you take the band and step on it. Then you cross it over and pull it up to your shoulders, creating an X. Keep the tension on the band by pulling up and trying to keep your hands at shoulder level. From here, you’ll take steps to your left and once you’ve reached the desired amount of reps, you can now go in the other direction. 

Exercise 5: Dead Bug
Repetitions: 10-15Movement: Start out lying down on your back. Keep your feet together and clasp your fingers behind your head. Now attempt to stay low to the ground and try to move your elbows toward your feet, while moving your feet toward your elbows.: 

Exercise 6: Plank with Knee to Elbow
Repetitions: 45 seconds (s) – 2 minutes (m)Movement: You start out in a plank position with your elbows under you. Keep the elbows about 6” apart. Try to keep the shoulder blades together with no curve. Really flex your stomach region, you will feel this. Keep your back straight and your hips up. Take your left knee and try to touch your left elbow for 2-3 reps, then try the right side. To increase the difficulty, you can add reps, speed up the movement and/or put your feet on an unstable surface like a FitBall. 

Exercise 7: Ab Wheel
Repetitions: 20-50Movement: Kneel on a soft surface like an Airex pad, and with both hands on opposite sides of the ab wheel, roll it out as far as you can without creating a lot of stress on your low back. To pull the wheel back in, focus on using your core to pull back the wheel. Warm up with a few easy reps before you dive into deeper reps. 

Exercise 8: Russian Twist on FB 
Repetitions: 12-15Movement: Lying with your back on the Fitball, and your feet firmly planted on the ground, rotate a medicine ball (MB), from left to right and back again. One full repetition is a full cycle of Middle, Left, Middle, Right, Middle, Left. To increase difficulty you can use a heavier MB and/or increase the speed of the exercise. 

Michael Ricci is a USAT Level 3 Certified Coach and a USAT Coach of the Year.

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