Sliders are one of my favorite toys to use at the gym. Adding a little sliding disk under your foot make moves like lunges and planks a bajillion times harder. Sam Tooley, performance coach and founder of Alpha Fit Club in New Jersey, says the sliders are all about introducing instability.
“I am a huge fan of utilizing the sliders, specifically with my endurance athletes in the weight room,” he says. “It allows them to work in all directions and focus on the control of their movement as well as their range of motion. My personal favorite is to perform reverse lunges with one foot placed on the slider.” When you’re gliding back into a lunge instead of stepping back, you’re forced to control your muscles on the way down so you don’t just fall over. Bonus: They’re easy to travel with. Feeling inspired?
Step 1: Buy a slider
These sliders are double-sided, with one side you can use on carpet and another you can use on hardwood. The set also comes in black, neon green, red, and yellow.
Step 2: Get to sliding with these slider disc exercises for your core and lower body
Below, Ash Wilking, Nike trainer and Rumble instructor in NYC, and Ka’imi Kuoha, personal trainer, martial artist, actress, and the owner of Othentik Gym in San Diego, share their favorite slider moves.
Slider Prone Snow Angels
This is one of Kuoha’s favorite moves to include during warmup or even as an active rest during a core or upper body series. Lying face down, reach your arms straight overhead with a glider under each hand. Keeping your arms straight, drag the sliders as you sweep your arms out and down toward your sides, lifting your chest up off the ground. Squeeze your glutes and lift your chest even higher as your arms sweep all the way down to your hips. Slowly lower back down as you sweep your arms back overhead. Repeat. Move slowly, and pause for a second at the top to hold and feel your entire upper back and even the backs of your shoulders working.
Forearm Plank Body Saw
Wilking says to begin in a forearm plank with your shoulders over elbows, hips in line with shoulders, and toes placed onto of gliders. Pressing down into elbow, push the body back slowly, allowing the toes to slide back a few inches. Pulling up through abdominals and into elbow, return to starting position. She says your body should rock back and forth like a saw. Be sure not to drop your hips below your shoulder.
Slider Mountain Climber Burpee
Kuoha says to start standing tall with a slider under each foot. Make sure the ball of your foot is in the middle of the slider for the most control. Bend your knees down and place your hands on the ground as you slide your legs back into a high plank position. With your legs out straight behind you and your hands under your shoulders, do a push up. At the top of the push up, keeping your toe on the slider, pull your foot forward as you tuck one knee toward your chest. Straighten your leg back out and, then perform another push up and knee tuck on the other side. Perform one final push up then slide both feet back in and stand up, raising your arms up overhead. Repeat.
To modify this move, Kuoah says you can remove the push ups completely, eliminate one or two, or perform them on your knees.
Kuoah says this move with work your lats, abs, arms, and glutes. Place a slider under each hand and set up as if you’re doing a push up from your knees with your hands directly under your shoulders and your body in a nice straight line from your head to your knees. Brace your abs and squeeze your glutes. Slide both hands out as far as you can, lowering your body toward the ground. Extend out, if you can, until you’re hovering just above the ground. Pull the sliders back under your shoulders without bending your arms as your body moves back into the plank position. Repeat. Don’t let your hips sag, lower back arch, or your butt go up in the air, Kuoah says. Also, she says to make sure you don’t sit your butt back to help pull your arms back in—let your arms and core do the work. Modify by extending one arm at a time.
High Plank Knee Tuck to Pike
Start in high plank position, with your shoulders over your wrists with slight bend in elbows. Without lifting or dropping your hips, Wilking says to pull your knees into your chest, stopping directly under your hips. Driving through your toes, return to high plank position. Shifting your weight into your hands, begin to press the ground away as you pike your hips up and slide your feet closer to hands without losing tension in abs or bending your knees. Pressing through your toes back out to high plank. Repeat.
Begin standing tall with your feet hip-width apart, and a slider under one foot. Wilking says to send your hips back like you’re sitting into a squat, and allow the glider to slide out to the side. Keeping your standing knees and toes facing straight ahead. Pulling the sider in and extending through standing leg, return to the starting position.
Hip Bridge with Single Leg Extension
Wilking says to lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flexed with heels digging into the sliders. Drive through your heels to lift hips into bridge position. Leaving one leg bent and driving into ground with heel, allow the opposite leg to extend out, sliding on heel without losing the bridge positions. Pulling into your heel, slide back to the starting position. Leave your hips lifted while alternating legs for a challenge, or lower hips between sides.
Hip Bridge with Eccentric Slide
Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flexed with heels digging into the sliders. Drive through your heels to lift hips into bridge position. Push through both heels to extend your legs while keeping toes lifted. When you’ve gone out as far as you end range is found, Wilking says to roll down spine onto your spine from your shoulders to your tail bone into a flat position. Pulling your knees in, reset bridge and repeat.
To see some of these moves and more, watch this full-body workout:
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