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Hardest Core Training Exercise – Part 3 – Supermans

Hardest Core Training Exercise – Part 3


In this is third installment of the “Hardest Core Training Exercise” series, we will be showing Supermans.  In Part 1 we showed ‘Kettlebell Sit-up to Press’ and in Part 2 we showed ‘Dragonflags’.

What you’ll find is that there are many similarities in all of the torso stabilizing and strengthening movements.  With any core training exercise, our goal is to remain as neutral as possible for the movement at hand.  Neutral posture (neutral pelvis and spine) for a static position, such as a plank, would mean a straight line could be drawn from the top of the head to the sacrum and it would connect at three points; head, upper back and sacrum.  This target would also hold true if you were talking about a hinged movement such as a straight leg sit-up or RDL.

Also, because most core movements are non-maximal (outside of maximal effort barbell movements), the breathing pattern is really specific.  Learning to “breath over the brace” especially when tension is greatest, will allow us to own the movement and develop respiratory control.  It is this same control we must bring back into our everyday lives because losing it has ramifications up and down the kinetic chain; loss of joint centration, loss of pelvic alignment, upper / lower cross syndromes and the ability to obtain neutral posture at rest or under load.


Supermans are done by setting up in a push-up position.  The lifter will then steadily walk their feet back until they are just hovering above the ground.  The movement of the feet is reversed and the lifter moves back into the push-up position.  As stated before, keep your entire body locked and braced in neutral and continue to breath even as the tension increases.  Also, tension in the posterior chain (engaging the lats, spinal erectors and glutes to prevent hip extension) and driving the toes downward, will help you stay rigid and safe.

Volume Considerations

I would always recommend focusing on quality of movement.  This means when your ability to stay locked diminishes, terminate the set.  This could mean you can’t control your breathing anymore or your lower back goes into hyperextension.

Good Volume Range:  3-4 sets of 5-10 reps, hold each end position for 3-5 seconds.

Fat Gripz


By on October 19th, 2011


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Comments (2)

  1. Posted by - Mike on October 19, 2011

    Jack LaLanne would be proud!

  2. Posted by - Ryan on October 22, 2011

    Great job! Not for those with bad / injured shoulders though.

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