If you want to paddle a kayak upstream, hit a punching bag with force, or even ensure you don't slouch at your desk, you need to build rotational strength, or your core's ability to twist your upper body with consistent force.
The core is the body's great stabilizer, and landmine twists engage the entirety of the muscle and tone the obliques, which are crucial to protecting your lower back and spine. Located near Santa Barbara, Peter Park trains Giancarlo Stanton, the Miami Marlins rightfielder and 2016 Home Run Derby king. Thanks to Park's tutelage, Stanton has built up enough core strength during his seven-year career to launch 200-plus dingers, and Park explains how to implement landmine twists into a workout session.
HOW IT WORKS
Start off slowly. While Stanton typically handles 45-pound plates, a beginner—or anyone who isn't capable of generating a bat speed of 90-plus mph (as Stanton is)—should first use a 10-pound plate and increase the weight as you go.
1. Load a bar in your gym's landmine unit (or, if one doesn't exist, wedge the bar into a corner with a towel around the end to prevent any slippage). Grasp the opposite end of the bar with both hands, with a stance that is perpendicular to the bar, your feet shoulder-width apart, and arms extended.
2. As you pivot with your right foot, twist your torso to the left, then explode back to a neutral position.
3. Repeat, twisting to the other side. You should perform between four sets of 5 to 7 reps.