Pallov Press

The Pallov press is a simple deep core anti-rotation exercise that you can do almost anywhere with just a resistance band.

In the world of resistance training, core activation is paid a lot of lip-service, but very few people take the time to train this deep stabilisation musculature.

When most people refer to the core, they're speaking about the abdominal muscles. In fact, the core musculature includes muscles of the hip girdle, shoulder girdle, lumbar spine and deep abdominal area, as well as the diaphragm and pelvic floor.

When core training is included, it often takes the form of crunches, reverse crunches, oblique crunches and similar movement-orientated abdominal work. Or it's some variation of the plank, an exercise where those same movement-orientated abdominal muscles and hip flexors quickly take over.

As I mentioned in my blog post about the straight leg raise, core activation is meant to be reflexive, unconscious and is usually a far more subtle muscle contraction than we expect. In that post, I used light resistance to provoke that response before performing the leg raise.

With the Pallov press, the focus is on provoking an anti-rotation response.

You'll find that you don't require a lot of resistance to do this exercise, meaning that with a simple resistance band, you can do it almost anywhere and any time.

In fact, it's better to be very conservative with the resistance you use for the Pallov press because too heavy a weight - one that you can't control - will encourage your nervous system to go looking for compensation patterns. 

Those compensations will almost certainly involve recruiting muscles more suited to movement, like the Rectus Abdominus, Obliques and hip flexors. If you learn the patterns utilising these muscles as stabilisers, you'll have to sacrifice some of the mobility these muscles are meant to allow you.

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Will Newton


In over twenty years of coaching, I have coached everyone from absolute beginners to world champions. My interest in getting the best results for athletes who compete for the love of the sport, rather than as professionals, drives me to find the most effective ways to get results. My mission is simple: Be in better shape at 70 than most people are at 20, and to help you do the same.

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