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Hollow Body Rocks for Core Stability

K Aleisha Fetters
Photo credit: Westend61 - Getty Images

From Bicycling

The hollow hold is a core-training move that will help boost your stability. A strong, stable core will keep you from wasting energy on unnecessary upper-body movement and allow you to channel your energy to your legs to power your climbs.

To up the ante on your hollow body holds, try this two-move hollow rock workout from Men’s Health fitness director Ebenezer Samuel, C.S.C.S. Samuel and Women’s Health editor-in-chief Liz Plosser teamed up to demonstrate the workout in a recent Instagram video.

In the first exercise, a corkscrew hollow rock, you’ll challenge your obliques to both create and maintain rotational energy. After all, most core workouts that feature a twisting motion, any torso rotation is brief; the obliques aren’t challenged to actually sustain the motion. Here, they’re never allowed to relax as you hold the corkscrew position.

To own that position and best benefit your obliques, focus on using your core to pin your elbow to the inside of your opposite knee. Actively press one into the other, resisting the temptation to twist through your shoulders. Keeping your non-connected limbs long will increase the length of the levers on your abs and obliques to max out the challenge.

The second move, a standard hollow rock, will give your obliques relative rest before you go back to corkscrew to the opposite side. But you’re not resting—it will also push your core to juggle multiple functions back to back. With both legs extended, you will feel an added challenge to the transverse and rectus abdominis as you focus on resisting torso extension.

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If you’re unable to keep your low back pinned to the floor, go ahead and raise your floating arm and leg to reduce the length of the lever until you can maintain a solid core position. In the video, you can see Plosser demo the modification.

Perform seven corkscrew hollow rocks on one side, seven standard rocks, then repeat both, this time corkscrewing to the opposite side. Rest for 30 seconds, then repeat for a total of three sets.

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