If you’ve been enjoying Wandsworth netball classes recently, no doubt you already know how many twists and turns you have to make when in the throes of a very competitive game of netball.
Having a strong dynamic core could prove very useful on the netball court in this regard, as it means you can move in all sorts of directions very quickly without losing your balance and maintaining tension in your body. It can make it very difficult indeed for the opposition to keep up with you and the ball, and means that you’re better able to chase as and when needed.
There are some interesting exercises you can do that can really help improve your core strength – some of which are lots of fun.
What about standing on a wobble cushion, back to back with one of your teammates, and passing a ball around and around between the two of you? It can be quite hard to keep your balance but you’ll find that you improve as your core gets stronger.
Core stability is vital for both dynamic and static balance but you need to make sure that you’re also working on your stability at the same time. So prioritise exercises that are, multiplanar, functional and are a reflection of what you do in real life, as well as those that make you use single and double leg movements.
Give a half kneeling wood chop a go, a brilliant exercise because it gets you to work in the transverse plane, as well as working all sorts of different parts of your body, like your obliques, lats, shoulders and your transverse abdominals.
For your starting position, kneel down and then bring one leg through in front of the other, with your knee bent at 90 degrees and your foot flat on the floor. Hold a 3kg dumbbell by the knee on the floor, holding both ends. Bring the weight up to the ceiling diagonally across your body, twisting your abs at the same time but with your hips facing forwards. Bring the weight back down.
Also give the Dead Bug a try. Lie down with your arms stretched out, then bend hips and knees to a 90-degree angle. Make sure your abs are switched on and that your lower back is pressed into the floor.
Take a deep breath and extend your left leg towards the floor, bringing your right arm overhead, exhaling as you do. Don’t let your back arch and keep your abs switched on. Return your arm and leg to the starting position and repeat with the opposite side.
These are just a couple of ways to strengthen your core, but talk to your local netball coach if you’d like to find out more about the different exercises involved.
Check out more exercises on Coach Mag.