Core series: Step up and twist

As our core links our upper body to our lower body it is important to do core exercises with movement involving other muscle groups.

I have chosen this double action exercise to do just that. It also is an efficient way to workout if you are stuck for time as it works many muscles at the same time.

Main muscles used: Hamstrings, quads, calves, obliques, shoulders and arms

1. Place the right foot on a step or bench and keep it there. 

2. Hold the weight by your left hip with both hands.

3. As your lift your left leg onto the step bring the weight from your hip across your body and high over your right shoulder. Keep arms as straight as possible as you do this.

4. Lower your left leg down to the ground and the weight back to your left hip again keeping your arms straight. Repeat for required reps. Then change sides.

It is important with this exercise that you keep the leg that is on the step in good hip, knee and foot alignment. Make sure you twist your body around with the weight, not just your arms.

Progression:

You can use a higher bench once you have your technique right and need an extra challenge.

Do 10 reps each side x 3 sets. Hold a weight that is challenging but comfortable to swing without losing your balance.