"This exercise is great for engaging the entire core, says Joe Dowdell, celebrity trainer, strength coach, and co-founder of Peak Performance NYC. "Not only do you have to stabilize the core in the sagittal plane (front to back movement), but you also have to prevent rotation from occurring in the transverse plane," he says. "The added resistance of the SandBell also challenges the shoulders and lats during the reach pattern." No access to SandBells? Dowdell recommends using two weight plates, each placed on a small towel instead.
Start in the top of a pushup position with each hand on top of a SandBell (or a weight plate placed on a small towel) on a smooth floor. Dowdell suggests starting with a 4-6 pound SandBell or a 5-pound plate, and if it's too easy, increase the resistance. Brace your core and tighten your glutes. Slide your left arm out as far as you can while bending your right elbow and lowering your body toward the floor. Keep your shoulders and hips parallel to the floor. Your body should form a straight line from your head to your ankles. To return to the starting position, extend your right elbow; raising your body back to the top position while simultaneously pulling your left hand back below your shoulder. Repeat on the other side. Try performing 3 sets of up to 12 reps on each side.