DUMBBELL COBRA STANDING SINGLE LEG

The dumbbell cobra standing single leg exercise develops balance and stability in the lower body while strengthening the postural muscles of the middle and upper back.

  • From a single leg stance, bend at the waist until your chest is at a 45 degree angle to the ground.
  • Feet should be pointing straight ahead with knees directly over the second and third toes.
  • Allow the arms to hang in front of the body with a dumbbell in each hand.
  • While keeping the abdominals tight, slowly perform shoulder extension and external rotation in a circular pattern until the arms are by the sides of the body.
  • At the end range, the palms are facing away from the body with the thumbs pointing upward and the shoulder blades are retracted and depressed.
  • Hold the end position, then slowly return to the start position.
  • Be sure not to compensate by elevating or protracting the shoulders.
  • Perform for the prescribed number of repetitions.

DUMBBELL COBRA STANDING

The dumbbell cobra standing exercise is a great movement to develop strong posture in the middle and upper back.

  • Stand with feet shoulder width apart, bend at the waist until your chest is at a 45 degree angle to the ground.
  • Feet should be pointing straight ahead with knees directly over the second and third toes.
  • Allow the arms to hang in front of the body with a dumbbell in each hand.
  • While keeping the abdominals tight, slowly perform shoulder extension and external rotation in a circular pattern until the arms are by the sides of the body.
  • At the end range, the palms are facing away from the body with the thumbs pointing upward and the shoulder blades are retracted and depressed.
  • Hold the end position for 1-2 seconds, then slowly return to the start position.
  • Be sure not to compensate by elevating or protracting the shoulders.
  • Perform for the prescribed number of repetitions.

Progression:

DUMBBELL BENT OVER ROW

  • With a dumbbell in each hand, bend at the hips keeping back straight. A soft bend in the knees is ok. 
  • Perform a row by bringing the elbows to the chest.
  • Hold 1-2 seconds.
  • Return to starting position.
  • Perform prescribed number of repetitions. 

Step Up Sideways

  • Stand facing sideways to step with feet shoulder width apart and facing straight ahead as shown. 
  • Perform a lateral lunge stepping up onto the box, keeping the knee above the foot.
  • Bring other leg up onto box.
  • Return to starting position.
  • Perform prescribed number of repetitions and repeat on other leg. 

Step Up To Balance Rotating

The step up to balance rotating exercises builds stability in the ankle, knee and hip by adding rotational movement to the step up to balance exercise.

  • Stand to the side of the box with feet shoulders-width apart.
  • Step onto box with one leg, keeping foot and knee pointed straight ahead.
  • Push through heel and stand up straight, balancing on one leg.
  • Flex the other leg at the hip and knee.
  • Return opposite leg to the ground and step off the box.
  • Repeat for prescribed number of repetitions.
  • Switch legs and repeat. 

Regressions:

Step Up To Balance

The step up to balance exercise develops strength and stabilization in the legs specific to uphill movement on the trail.

  • Stand in front of a box with feet shoulders-width apart and pointing straight ahead.
  • Step onto box with one leg, keeping toes pointing straight ahead and knee over top of the middle of the foot. 
  • Push through front heel to stand upright balancing on one leg. Straighten knee and hip to fully activate the glutes.
  • Bring the other leg up by bending at the knee and pulling the foot up so that it is parallel with the ground. 
  • Hold prescribed number of seconds.
  • Return lifted leg to the ground, followed by the opposite leg keeping toes and knee aligned.
  • Repeat for prescribed number of repetitions.    

Make it easier:

  • Take out the balance, just do a step up.
  • Decrease step height

Progressions

 

 

Step Up Rotating

  • Stand facing sideways to the step with feet shoulder width apart and facing straight ahead.
  • Rotate hips and body to step up onto the box as shown.
  • Return to starting position.
  • Repeat for prescribed number of repetitions and repeat on other leg. 

Lunge Step Back

  • Take a step backward with hands at sides, core engaged. 
  • Bend both knees until front thigh is parallel to the floor and back knee dips but doesn’t touch the floor.
  • Front knee should be above the foot between the toes and ankles as shown. 
  • Press through front heel to return to starting position.
  • Repeat on other leg. 

Step Up

The step up is a functional movement pattern every adventure athlete needs to master. It develops specific strength in the legs for uphill movement.

  • Stand facing a bench or high step (about 8-18 inches depending on height and strength level) with arms at sides and feet shoulder width apart.
  • Step on to the bench with left leg and press into that leg, coming to a standing position on the step. Do not push off with the trailing leg (right leg).
  • Tap right foot on the step next to the left leg, then immediately step back down.
  • Repeat, alternating sides.

Progressions:

  • Increase step height.
  • Add weighted pack.

Standing Cobra

  • Stand with feet shoulder width apart and arms at shoulder level with palms facing each other.
  • Slowly bring the arms towards the hips while rotating the arms out so that the thumbs are trying to point behind you at the end range of motion.
  •  At the end range of motion, try to bring the shoulder blades down and back.
  • Hold for 1-2 seconds.
  • Return to starting position and repeat for prescribed number of repetitions.