Exercises You Should Be Doing: Band Pallof Press Squat & Split Squat
I have two surprises for you today.
1. Normally when I do an Exercises You Should Be Doing post, I give only one recommendation. Today, however, I’m giving you TWO!
2. In addition, not only do you get two new (to you) exercises to try out, but you also get to see me in all my high definition sexiness, because I used my new iTouch to film the videos.
Actually, scratch that. There’s nothing remotely sexy about filming myself demonstrating videos after a brutal eight hours of coaching on the floor.
My arms look gunny though. So that’s a plus.
Anyways, for those who have been reading this blog for an extended length of time, you know that I have a few obsessions:
- Matt Damon
- Might as well throw beef jerky in there, too
- Star Wars and Lord of the Rings (or any other fantasy/sci-fi movie that was equally as likely to not get me laid in high school and college).
- Boobies – yeah, they’re pretty awesome!
- And, Pallof presses
The latter, of course, is something I’ve written on extensively here on this blog. For those you need a refresher or haven’t the faintest idea what the hell I’m referring to, it may help to read this:
Needless to say, I love me some Pallof presses, and I’d argue that they’re the most versatile “core” exercise you can implement into a program regardless of one’s training experience or history. If you’re a complete beginner, you can perform a standard Pallof press to teach the whole concept of anti-rotation and core stability.
Conversely, for those with a little more experience under the bar, Pallof presses can easily be progressed to more challenging variations like the ones below.
Band Pallof Press Squat
Who Did I Steal It From: No one. I think. I may actually be the first on the interwebz to combine a Pallof Press with a squat. Genius!
What Does It Do: As with any Pallof press variation, the name of the game is training core stability. As you extend your arms out – and thus, increase the lever arm – the more you have to RESIST the pull of the band inward. Adding in the squat is just a great way to make the movement more challenging (since you’re implementing movement into the mix), and well, it just looks pimp.
Key Coaching Cues: Don’t try to be a hero and start with the thickest band possible. This exercise is deceivingly harder than it looks, and I’d highly recommend doing what I did and start with a 1/2 inch band.
Furthermore, make sure that you LOCK YOUR ELBOWS out to start. From there, assume a basic squat position and have at it. The narrower the stance, the harder the exercise becomes.
Focus on sitting back, while pushing the knees out as you descend towards the floor (maintaining more of a vertical shin angle). Perform 8-10 reps/per side.
Band Pallof Press Split Squat
Who Did I Steal It From: I’d like to take credit for this one, but Jim “Smitty” Smith blogged about this bad boy not too long ago, so he gets the credit.
What Does It Do: For those looking to kick it up a notch, the Band Pallof Press Split Squat is a beotch! Again, start with a 1/2 inch band. That’s what I was using in the video, and as you can readily see, I was struggling.
I love this variation because it allows us to pattern the lunge, which is important, but it also hammers the external rotators of the forward leg, which is equally as important because pretty much everyone has weak external rotators from sitting on their keesters all day.
Key Coaching Cues: Seriously, start with the 1/2 inch band. Don’t be an a-hole. Likewise, the pull of the band is going to be significantly greater here because your base of support is narrower. As such, try to be more cognizant of taking your time with this one. Don’t rush, and control the movement.
And there you have it. Yet a few more Pallof Press variations you can throw into your exercise repertoire. Try them out today, and let me know what you think!
UPDATE: come to find out, my iTouch isn’t in high definition after all. My bad. Sorry ladies.
Comments for This Entry
McbrmikeIf I don't have bands, can I just do this with cables and I guess, light weight? I do standing and kneeling Pallof Presses that way.
January 3, 2012 at 9:37 am |
AndreasHi Mcbrmike, last week I used a split squat Pallof press on a cable (weight was about 10pounds) for an 11-year old girl and it worked great - and it saves time! Greetings Andreas Berlin, Germany
January 3, 2012 at 10:16 am |
McbrmikeHmmmmm. Well, while I appreciate your tip on using the cable and its effectiveness, did you really have to say that it works for great for 11 year old girls?......Clearly, I'm in the 12 year old category! That hurts. .lol.
January 4, 2012 at 8:42 am |
Livia VaduvaJonathan Goodman has a video using cables, check it out here: http://youtu.be/GoDGorFauqU
January 3, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
JonathanHaha, thanks for the props. I sent Tony a Facebook message with it so he can see how we roll in Canada
January 3, 2012 at 5:11 pm |
SmittyThanks for the respect brother
January 3, 2012 at 9:38 am |
Taekwondo720Don't forget the 45 degree angle up or down hold also. Very different and good for core also.
January 3, 2012 at 10:04 am |
SteveMost excellent movements, Tony! I will surely incorporate these into some future programming for myself and my Clients. And unless I missed it, there wasn't one "epic" in this whole post - well played sir, well played.
January 3, 2012 at 10:13 am |
ChrisRearfoot elevated split squat with a Pallof Press is awesome too. (stole that one a few years ago.)
January 3, 2012 at 10:35 am |
EmilyLove, love, love the Pallof Press....don't know if my clients like it as much as I do but they do them anyway. ;-) I use the bands with them as I do not have a cable machine. Squats and split squats are part of my repertoire too....so combining the press with them sounds awesome. Thanks Tony!
January 3, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
Nicholas St John RheaultGreat stuff TG.... Ummmmm if I may add to your obsession list.... Isn't/Shouldn't "Kayle" be in there too? Happy New Years to you and CP Staff
January 3, 2012 at 1:40 pm |
Chris NunzNice Tony! I assume the split-squat variation can be done from the opposite direction too?
January 3, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
WillyThanks for the great stuff! I'm gonna be the a-hole looking for clarification on the "Press" component of this movement. Is it just an isometric hold in the arms and core, or does the name imply that you can progress this exercise by adding a pressing-type of movement as you descend (held against your chest to start and pressing outwards into extension as you descend into the squat, or vertical movement from 45 degrees down to 45 degrees up as you descend)?
January 3, 2012 at 8:23 pm |
SpinellisGreat exercises Tony, they are going to be a great addition to the workouts. How are the 2012 goals going?
January 3, 2012 at 8:23 pm |
TunstallHey Tony, have you gone through the squat movement with the Pallof press as part of a progression? I've been doing that as well as single arm band rows with squat movements. Pretty humbling.
January 4, 2012 at 2:49 pm |
Awesome Fitness reads/videos for the week – The Gymless Body Blog « The Gymless Body[...] Band Pallof Press Squat and Split Squat by Tony Gentilcore [...]
January 7, 2012 at 6:40 pm |
Eric BGood Deal, I used these this past summer with a group of college baseball players. Try out Reverse Lunge palloff presses! Good read Tony!
January 8, 2012 at 6:57 pm |
AnonymousYeah, the possibilities are pretty endless. Thanks for the tip!
January 9, 2012 at 7:34 am |