Highly decorated Olympian Lindsey Vonn might well be one best skiers in the world, but she gained her fair share of battle scars—concussions, fractures, ACL tears, and other injuries—along her journey to the top. Luckily, none of the ailments killed her competitive spirit, but instead fueled her to work even harder to gain the strength she needed. Her training for the PyeongChang Olympics included a specific core-strengthening move (or, in this case, lack thereof) to help stabilize her torso while heading down the slopes in order to keep her body safe.
The standing anti-rotation hold, Self reports, involves contracting the core and holding it totally still in a specific position, like a side plank.
“Anti-rotation movements are very good for anyone who wants to generate more power from their core and also perfect their form.” —trainer Andrew Schuth
“Anti-rotation movements are very good for anyone who wants to generate more power from their core and also perfect their form,” trainer Andrew Schuth told Self. “You may think that your core is just your abs, but it’s really an entire entity comprised of more than 20 different muscles, including your obliques—the muscles on the side of your stomach—and the deep muscles in your spine that wrap all the way around your midsection.”
To strengthen your abs, protect your body, and help you get more out of your other core exercises, give Vonn’s go-to move a try: According to The New York Times, her exact exercise involves grabbing a pulley (or a resistance band!) and holding 30 pounds of resistance for 30 to 60 seconds twice on each side of her body. “We call it ‘anti-rotation.’ The core is preventing rotation, so when she pushes that pulley out, it wants to pull her into the machine,” her trainer, Alex Bunt, said. Because of that, she has to use her core strength to stabilize herself against the pull.
But start small, resistance-wise, and work your way up to Vonn-level strength. You can’t beat a simple move that gives you great abs and simultaneously helps keep your body strong and injury-free.
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