by Skye Nacel, Certified Personal Trainer (MovNat Level 2), Certified Broga Instructor
The Steel Mace is an ancient training tool dating back over 2000 years ago. It was an important part of training for Hindu Warriors who used the Gada as a weapon and the Mace as possibly the first ever cross training tool (albeit for war). Early versions were usually a long bamboo stick with a heavy stone attached to the end. This style of training continued to be used for generations but has just entered a renaissance of sorts with there now being several modern manufactured versions available.
We are pleased to announce that we have steel maces at Evolve and have been using them regularly in our classes ranging from Fit Fusion to Movement Fundamentals as well as with personal training clients and physical therapy patients. The benefits of steel mace training are numerous! Since the mace holds almost all of its weight in the ball head, this results in an uneven weight distribution which really engages stabilizing muscles around our joints.
Core strength is required to keep the mace in position as we move through positions which includes lots of rotation. Grip strength is also a very huge benefit and as we know, there are several research studies linking grip strength and mortality. We think of it as one of the most functional tools you can possibly use which is why we brought them in and trained the staff in their usage.
We have a range of 10 and 15 pound Set for Set Steel maces. Feel free to ask one of our trainers about them and arrange a short demo so you can see some ways to use them. Feel free to check out this video by our friends Anthony Rock and Set for Set to see them in action.
When you hear people talk about the "core muscles" do you know what they are talking about? In simple terms, your core is just about everything on your body except your arms and legs. This means you can think of your glutes, hips, abdominal muscles, inner abdominal muscles, pelvic floor, and scapula as your core. Your core is where your power is generated in order to carry out any movement. While abdominal and inner abdominal muscles do play a large roll in core stability, they don’t make up the core all by themselves.
What does the core do?
Your core most often acts as a stabilizer and force transfer center rather than a prime mover. Yet consistently people focus on training their core as a prime mover and in isolation. This would be doing crunches or back extensions versus functional movements like deadlifts, overhead squats, and pushups, among many other functional closed chain exercises. By training that way, not only are you missing out on a major function of the core, but also better strength gains, more efficient movement, and longevity of health.
So, with all this in mind, it's a good idea to keep your core at the top of the "to strengthen" list.
Watch the video below for 5 great core exercises you can do today.
If you'd like personal help in strengthening your core, contact us today to schedule time with one of our certified personal trainers.
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