Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 27
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jnails's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Posts
    251

    Core exercises for XC racing

    Ok, all this talk about winter training has got me thinking. It's that time of year to get back in the gym and lift some, but I'd like to focus on my core this year. What kind of core program/exercises has given you guys the best results? I see so many people doing so many different things in the gym that I don't know what works and what doesn't.

  2. #2
    Intermediate wannabe
    Reputation: lowendrick's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    198
    http://www.bikejames.com/

    Check out James Wilson's programs. I have had good success with them.
    "You don't stop riding when you get old, you get old when you stop riding." ~KRob

  3. #3
    Dirty South Underdog
    Reputation: Andrea138's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    1,601
    Your core muscles are made of the same stuff as all your other muscles, so train them the same way- deadlifts, squats, good mornings for your back/weighted situps, medicine ball throws, machine exercises for your abs. Reps <15 w/enough weight to bring about muscular failure on your last set.
    Brickhouse Blog (most known unknown)

    Just Riding Along- best internet radio show on Mountain Bike Radio

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: MTB Strength Coach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    98
    Quote Originally Posted by Andrea138
    Your core muscles are made of the same stuff as all your other muscles, so train them the same way- deadlifts, squats, good mornings for your back/weighted situps, medicine ball throws, machine exercises for your abs. Reps <15 w/enough weight to bring about muscular failure on your last set.
    While the core muscles are made up of the same stuff as your other muscles, you don't want to train them the same way. This article by Mike Boyle on a joint by joint approach to training shows why you need to look at the function of each joint/ area and train it appropriately.

    http://www.tmuscle.com/free_online_a...ch_to_training

    Basically, your low back area is intended to resist movement, not create it, and things like sit ups and back extensions are actually the wrong way to train that area. The studies by Stuart McGill have also shown that crunches place an unreal amount of stress on the discs of the low back so doing weighted crunches are even worse!

    Machines also have no place in core training sine the abs never work in isolation from the rest of the body and shouldn't be trained that way.

    However, deadlifts and other total body compound lifts are a great way to take the core strength you gain from direct work like planks and side planks and transfer that strength into a real world movement.

    In my opinion, the Turkish Get Up is one of the best overall core training exercises around and doesn't get enough press in MTB circles.

    Training to failure is also a bodybuilding myth. Powerlifters and Olympic weight lifters don't train to failure every time they work out and no one is going to accuse them of being weak! While you want to push yourself close to failure every 4 weeks, doing it every time you train is not necessary and in fact can result in a lot of excessive fatigue and soreness.
    Ride Strong,

    James Wilson
    BikeJames.com

  5. #5
    Nuts
    Reputation: bdundee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    4,515
    I like the TRX training, builds great core imoa.
    And I love beer!!

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: limba's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,940
    P90X has a core workout. I can't say how effective it really is but it sure makes me sweat.
    I'm sure you can find someone on Youtube doing the dvd and copy the moves or I could write them down if you're interested.

  7. #7
    Dirty South Underdog
    Reputation: Andrea138's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    1,601
    Quote Originally Posted by MTB Strength Coach
    Basically, your low back area is intended to resist movement, not create it, and things like sit ups and back extensions are actually the wrong way to train that area. The studies by Stuart McGill have also shown that crunches place an unreal amount of stress on the discs of the low back so doing weighted crunches are even worse!

    Machines also have no place in core training sine the abs never work in isolation from the rest of the body and shouldn't be trained that way.

    However, deadlifts and other total body compound lifts are a great way to take the core strength you gain from direct work like planks and side planks and transfer that strength into a real world movement.

    In my opinion, the Turkish Get Up is one of the best overall core training exercises around and doesn't get enough press in MTB circles.

    Training to failure is also a bodybuilding myth. Powerlifters and Olympic weight lifters don't train to failure every time they work out and no one is going to accuse them of being weak! While you want to push yourself close to failure every 4 weeks, doing it every time you train is not necessary and in fact can result in a lot of excessive fatigue and soreness.
    Bodyweight abdominal exercises will only create enough strength necessary to perform the exercise (more endurance- yes. more strength- no). If you want to get stronger past that, you have to use progressive resistance for whatever exercise it is you choose- there's no other way around it.

    I realize that training to failure is a practice of bodybuilders. I also have given out enough training advice to know that 99% of the people who get advice still won't quite push themselves to failure. Hence the slight exaggeration.

    I used to be competitive in both powerlifting and Olympic weightlifting... here's a good article from one of the most prolific powerlifting gyms in the US: http://westside-barbell.com/westside...20Training.pdf
    Last edited by Andrea138; 11-13-2009 at 10:45 AM.
    Brickhouse Blog (most known unknown)

    Just Riding Along- best internet radio show on Mountain Bike Radio

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    11,237
    One thing that seems to be missing in the above is stretching.....

    You gotta stretch your core has well has strengthing it....

    I have not yet tried a formal yoga class, but I certainly have copied several of its core stretching poses.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    170
    I've found that just doing a good yoga class twice a week seems to be great core strengthening for me. While doing this for the first time this past season, I've been able to ride a lot more hours per week without getting any back soreness (before I started doing yoga, high mile weeks could cause chronic lower back pain that built up over time), feel a lot faster, and have switched from an fs bike to mostly riding fully rigid. Perhaps the last one is unrelated, but I don't think so - it feels like doing yoga gives me new strength and control that enables me to not feel like I need the suspension as much any more to go fast downhill. Obviously other handling skills are also involved here, and I could probably see even more improvement by focusing on those, but my main point is that I feel like core strength helps a lot with speed, handling, and endurance, and that yoga seems to be a great way for me to build and maintain this core strength.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Yeti2424's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    317
    Your core needs both stability and rotational strength. Stability strength can be worked on directly through exercises like planks, hanging leg raises, and ab wheels or indirectly through exercises like squats, deadlifts, standing military press, bent over rows, or any other exercise that requires you to keep your core tight and stable. Rotational strength can be worked on through exercises like Russian twists, medicine ball side throws, and other controlled trunk twisting movements. Both aspects are important in athletics because both actions are used.
    Retribution Fitness: Strength, Power, and Purpose
    General fitness workouts posted daily.

  11. #11
    I Tried Them ALL... Moderator
    Reputation: Zachariah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    4,317
    Doing side planks are best for a stronger core. It also helps to reduce the body fat around the trunk area too. Ever since I got my six-pack...the backaches suddenly disappeared.
    "The mind will quit....well before the body does"

  12. #12
    Nuts
    Reputation: bdundee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    4,515
    Quote Originally Posted by Zachariah
    It also helps to reduce the body fat around the trunk area too. Ever since I got my six-pack...the backaches suddenly disappeared.
    That's funny for every six-pack I get I see the body fat around my trunk area growing!
    And I love beer!!

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Funrover's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    3,545
    Is there a place I can go to see what all of the different work outs are? I hear different types, "Planks" Deadlifts, etc etc.. I know what some are not others.. Help?

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: limba's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,940
    Crossfit has lots of videos demonstrating exercises but you can Google or find almost any move on youtube if you need help.

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    2,116
    The middle portion of Turkish Get Up reminds me a lot of side incline pose in yoga.

    Yoga has done right by me in terms of overall strength that has made a difference on the bike.
    "Bikes aren't fast--people are fast. Bikes are overpriced. It's an important distinction."---BikeSnob NYC

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Yeti2424's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    317
    Quote Originally Posted by Zachariah
    Doing side planks are best for a stronger core. It also helps to reduce the body fat around the trunk area too. Ever since I got my six-pack...the backaches suddenly disappeared.
    That's actually a myth. Unless you have it sucked out you have no control as to where you lose bodyfat. It generally goes off in the reverse order that it went on which depends on a persons genetics, hormones, and age. You most likely got your six back as a result of lowering your overall body fat percentage.
    Retribution Fitness: Strength, Power, and Purpose
    General fitness workouts posted daily.

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Yeti2424's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    317
    Quote Originally Posted by Funrover
    Is there a place I can go to see what all of the different work outs are? I hear different types, "Planks" Deadlifts, etc etc.. I know what some are not others.. Help?
    http://www.exrx.net/Lists/Directory.html
    Retribution Fitness: Strength, Power, and Purpose
    General fitness workouts posted daily.

  18. #18
    I Tried Them ALL... Moderator
    Reputation: Zachariah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    4,317
    Quote Originally Posted by Yeti2424
    That's actually a myth. Unless you have it sucked out you have no control as to where you lose bodyfat. It generally goes off in the reverse order that it went on which depends on a persons genetics, hormones, and age. You most likely got your six back as a result of lowering your overall body fat percentage.
    True, I did not spot-reduce any body fat. I did it through diet, weight training and cardio. The planks just add even more definition once the six-pack shows up.
    "The mind will quit....well before the body does"

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Flat Ark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    1,533
    P90X Ab-Ripper X!!!!!!!!!!! It is a 16min workout. I have been doing it twice a week for the last month and a half and it has made a HUGE difference. You hear people/trainers talk about the core being a platform for your legs to push off of, now I know what they are talking about. The legs are incorporated into several of the exercises whichs seems to really tie the legs and core together with the workouts.

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Posts
    259

    A combination of things

    I am a firm believer in yoga, pilates and weight training. Yoga gives me the flexibility to bail off my bike easier if needed plus the balance poses are killer for concentration. Pilates builds core like crazy. Should mention that in the winter I shovel lots of snow and the only time my back does not hurt is when I do pilates before the snow flys. I use a intermediate vidio by Ana Caban for my pilates. And weights just tie it all together nicely and I totally notice that I can use my strenght better with a strong core.

    This year I found a 20 minute core workout at Core-bicycling.com I do this along with a few pilates moves before each weight session and its been great. Also good to mix things up. I find that doing my core first ensures that it gets done and it warms my body up for the weights. I save my stretching for in between sets and after the work out.

    Straw

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Funrover's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    3,545
    Quote Originally Posted by Yeti2424
    Thanks!

  22. #22
    Smarter Than He Looks
    Reputation: Sinker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    529
    Check out the routines at http://www.bodyrock.tv

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Henchman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    112
    Trailbuilding. Great for the core, and you might as well do something useful with your energy and time

  24. #24
    Dirty South Underdog
    Reputation: Andrea138's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    1,601
    This is true... swinging an ax probably beats the bejesus out of anything that's been suggested here by me or anyone else
    Brickhouse Blog (most known unknown)

    Just Riding Along- best internet radio show on Mountain Bike Radio

  25. #25
    I Tried Them ALL... Moderator
    Reputation: Zachariah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    4,317
    Nothing beats long, technical hillclimbs, according to my pro racer friend...who is built just like Dave Wiens and Geoff Kabush. The constant mashing and spinning combined with pulling up on the bars for traction, works your core well....to the core.
    "The mind will quit....well before the body does"

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •