Exercises You Should Be Doing: Rock the Boat

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With apologies to any 90s hip-hop and R&B fans, today’s exercise has nothing to do with Aaliyah’s hit “Rock the Boat.”

OMG – such a classic song.

I listen to this song – as well as other songs from all her albums (Age Ain’t Nothing But a Number, One in a Million, Aaliyah) – and can’t help but wonder “what might have been?” if she hadn’t died so tragically back in 2001 in an airplane crash.1

Alrighty then, lets move away from the somber tone shall we?

I’ve got a quick-n-dirty exercise for you to try this week.

Rock the Boat


Who Did I Steal it From: Surprisingly, not Ben Bruno (the landmine Jedi that he is).

Last week, before heading to NY, I stopped by Mike Reinold’s place, Champion Physical Therapy & Performance (in Waltham, MA), to film a few podcasts and to get a quick lift. Strength coach Rob Sutton showed me this bad boy, and I really liked it.

What Does It Do: It humbles you for sure.2

Outside of that, it’s an excellent drill that trains the abdominals (core) in a more “functional” manner. I.e., anti-extension, not to mention there’s a high degree of resisting rotation (loop stress) as you, you know, “rock the boat” moving the barbell from side-to-side.

Key Coaching Cues: This is a self-limiting exercise in that the ROM used by each individual is going to be determined by his or her’s ability level. The idea, however, is to “lock” things down and place a premium on lumbo-pelvic-hip control (no excessive lumbar flexion or extension).

Foot width will vary (closer together = harder).

Shoot for 5-8 repetitions per side. But you could also make this a timed event, say, 15-20s, working up to 30-40s.

Have fun!

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Plus, get a copy of Tony’s Pick Things Up, a quick-tip guide to everything deadlift-related. See his butt? Yeah. It’s good. You should probably listen to him if you have any hope of getting a butt that good.

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  1. Ironically, she died just a few hours after filming the video for “Rock the Boat.”

  2. And totally makes your triceps look huge.

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