Remember to take deep breaths and exhale on the exertion phase of the exercises. The more you pull your lower abdominals towards your spine the more your erector spinae muscles are supported. NEVER compromise form for speed!
In yoga we call this pose Four legged staff pose because your body is as solid as a staff and supported by four positions, hands and feet. For our purposes we are increasing the intensity of the pose by integrating the ball into the exercise.
Balance with the ball under the quads. Hands are positioned directly under the shoulders, fingers spread wide. Pull the navel towards the spine; engage the quads and gluts as well as flexing the feet. Hold for one minute. Relax and repeat three times.
Place the ball under the shins and hold for one minute. For an additional upper body workout include ten to twenty push-ups. Relax and repeat.
Inhale deeply as you continue to pull your navel towards the spine. Exhale and pull the knees towards the upper body. FOCUS on the abdominals so you do not over use the hip flexors. Begin by moving slowly and then pick up the pace as quickly as possible. Repeat until muscle fatigue and then repeat three times if possible.
In this exercise bring the hips up.
Place the feet flat on the floor, knees bent and the chest is lifted. Focus the eyes over the knees. Roll the shoulders back and down away from the ears. Begin to lower the upper body until you feel the abdominals engaged. Hold for one minute. Relax and repeat three times.
Lift the legs off the floor and maintain a 90 degree angle at the legs. Flex the feet towards your face. Begin to pump the upper and lower body towards each other in fast, explosive and controlled movements. Continue until muscle fatigue. Relax and repeat three times.
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Editor's Note: Katherine Roberts, founder of Yoga for Golfers, has 20 years of experience in fitness training, yoga studies, professional coaching and motivation. Katherine welcomes your email questions and comments, contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.