If I asked you to name something that hit multiple muscle groups across your body, increased your heart rate, helped you burn calories, increased your agility, and incorporated plyometric principles to help you build speed and agility, what would your reply be?
You’d probably name some sort of intense complex workout or maybe a metabolic conditioning type routine. Perhaps others of you would simply give me a blank stare. That’s okay. Afterall, I asked you to name something that satisfied quite a few requirements. While those of you who would’ve mentioned complex workouts and metabolic conditioning routines would be correct, there’s also something else out there that accomplishes these goals. Let me throw one more condition out there….it’s not a workout, it’s an EXERCISE.
We’re accustomed to thinking along the lines of full-on fitness plans or workout routines when we’re searching for something that builds up our major muscle groups, burns calories, and increases our athletic abilities. I mean, I’ll be honest, that’s asking a LOT from one single exercise, isn’t it? Even the best exercises have their limits…
Squats are great, but they don’t do much for active caloric burn. Box jumps are awesome, but they aren’t doing much to increase lean muscle mass when performed without resistance-based exercises. Med ball slams are pretty killer, but aren’t high enough intensity to sustain an elevated heart rate. I could go on and on here…
The “Super” Exercise
There are few exercises that can accomplish so many of your fitness goals at ONE time. Lucky for you guys, we’re going to highlight one of the best exercises known to mankind (in my own humble opinion), and show you how incorporating this into whatever plan your on will help you jump-start your progress on all fronts. Doesn’t matter if you’re stuck on a plateau, busting through plateaus, or have no clue what plateaus are…..this exercise is for all fitness levels. The way in which you utilize this exercise and incorporate it into your plan will be the difference. That’s what’s so great here…this exercise workouts perfectly for any and all fitness abilities and is so easily customized to suit your needs.
Not only that, you’re likely going to be doing something you’ve never tried before. Don’t be surprised if you see all the hardcore fitness heads in your gym giving you a few extra looks when they see you doing this. This thing breaks the mold, gives a little spice and variety to your routine, and is guaranteed to turn you into certifiable bad ass.
So what is this super exercise? This super exercise is something called Push Up/Dip Swings. Want to see it in action? Check out this link…
Transform Your Body. Faster.
So, what does this exercise do for you? Check it out…
- Targets the muscles in the chest, triceps, deltoids, core, and hamstrings.
- When performed at a high-intensity, this exercise adequately bumps your heart rate resulting in increased caloric expenditure.
- Plyometric components target fast-twitch muscle fibers resulting in increased speed, agility, and power.
Now, the key to maximizing the benefits of this exercise is found in the swing. Developing the ability to swing through from push up position to dip position is vital. If you’re brand spanking new to this, it’ll likely take you some time to get it down. You’ve got to have the core strength to tuck your knees in to your chest as you swing through to avoid dragging your feet on the floor. A fluid back and forth swinging motion is what elevates the heart rate and delivers the plyometric benefits. As you begin to tire (and you will…QUICKLY) you’ll have to struggle more and more to keep your feet up. This is where progress is made. Fight through the burn. Fight through the fatigue. Keep fighting until you’re able to get yourself through in one fluid motion, a minimum of 10 times. Once you’ve hit 10 total reps with no breaks, you’re ready to incorporate some advanced techniques.
An Exercise For All Abilities
If you recall above, I said this exercise is perfect for all abilities. Wherever you may be, I’ve developed ways to utilize this exercise most effectively, with the goal of helping you progress quickly and safely. Check out the tips for each level of ability…
- Beginner – Focus on completing your push ups and dips with proper form. If you can’t swing through in one motion, I would urge you to switch between push ups and dips as fast as possible, thus increasing your heart rate and helping build your endurance. At the end of each set of push up/dip swings, throw in some planking to help target the core muscles. Perform sets of 6-10, with the goal of trying to make a fluid swing through each time out.
- Intermediate – Perhaps you can get a full swing, but can’t maintain this motion for an entire set of 10-15 repetitions. No problem. Perform as many fluid swings as possible, remember to keep your form on your push ups and dips, and ADD an extra set of two of only swings at the end of your standard sets. Focus on keeping your legs up and using your lower body to help push you through. By adding sets only focusing on the swing motion, you’ll get increased cardiovascular benefits as well as force your muscles to adapt to this type of skill.
- Advanced – If you’re having no problem completing 15+ reps with a fluid swing on each rep, it’s time to bump up the challenge. Some ideas to increase the difficulty: shoot for 2-3 push ups and dips on each rep. Go for max reps in 1 minute, always trying to beat your personal best. Turn the push ups into plyo push ups, jumping from the dumbbells to the ground, then back again.
This exercise is so effective, if you’re a little short on time or space, an entire workout can be created around this exercise alone. For a quick idea on how you’d do that, take a look at this….
Pyramid/Reverse Pyramid Push Up/Dip Swing Workout – Perform 15 reps of push up/dip swings, rest 15 seconds. Perform 14 reps of push up/dip swings, rest 14 seconds. Perform 13 reps of push up/dip swings, rest 13 seconds. You get the idea. Once you hit 1 repetition of push up/dip swings, it’s time to go back UP the pyramid. Start with the reverse of the above and finish once you’re back at 15 full reps. Feeling extra motivated, complete this circuit another time or two to get a total body conditioning workout.
Hopefully you see why I call this a “super exercise”. Super exercises are those exercises that hit the three fundamental goals named above. Again, they’ll help you build muscle by utilizing compound movements, increase your heart rate and caloric burn, and provide a plyometric element to increase your athletic abilities and overall fitness levels. Stay connected to the blog so you’ll be sure to catch all of the other super exercises we’ve been working on for you guys in the months ahead.
Any questions, feel free to leave a comment and we’ll be happy to get back to you as soon as possible!