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Episode 248: Compass Presses Part 1: Strength and Movement Mapping

Video Highlights

- Review compass lunges
- Presses with band resistance
- Easy options to modify the challenge

Today we’re going to playing with what we call compass presses.

In the next couple of blogs, we’re going to be looking at some of our favorite, what we call mapping drills.

Basically, one of the ideas that we always share is that we want to, over time, take kind of traditional exercises that we’re used to and add some novelty to them to challenge our brain in terms of balance, coordination, etc.

So, to start off, we want to think about being in the middle of compass.

We’ve done this before, compass lunges. Imagining that you’re standing in the middle, that would give you a bunch of different options. You could step directly north, directly south, east and west, and then your diagonals. That’s going to be the foot pattern that we’re going to be using.

Basics of the initial lunge that we want you to focus on, as you step in get most of your weight onto the lunging leg and actually lock out the knee of the non-lunging leg. Alright?

Right now, we’re not going to talk about foot position or any of that stuff, because what we really want to focus on is doing a little bit of a pressing technique.

So, to begin with, I’m starting off with just a single band. Notice that I’ve attached it here. I am not going to continually adjust my body so that I am always pressing the band straight ahead. That’s not the point of the drill.

The point of the drill is to not only move into a lunge position, but now to actually explore some different pressing motions with the arm.

So, start off nice and tall, I’m going to step forward with my left leg. Simple press. It seems easy.

Now, I’ll go anterior 45 with my left leg. Simple press.

Now I’m going to step lateral. Simple press. Posterior 45, remember now I’m getting all my weight on that rear leg. So, just to create some tension, I’m going to have to press across my body, and then I’m going to step directly posterior. And again, think about pressing out.

It feels a little bit odd because the tension will change. Now if you’re using a cable machine or something, you’ll have a more consistent tension.

Male trainer and female athlete lunging with medicine balls

But again, each repetition of this depending on what leg I have forward and what I’m doing, is going to give me a slightly different feel to the press itself.

As I said, one of our goals here is to continually work on the novelty that we can create with any kind of exercise, because it challenges our brain in different ways.

It challenges our balance. It challenges, again, our overall body map.

So version one of that is with one band. I could do that right side, left side.

I could then go through and repeat that same exact process now using two bands. As I add the second band into it, I’m going to wind up getting differential pressures with the band, which is great because in athletic context, most of the time we are never getting exactly 50 pounds over here, and 50 pounds over here.

If I’m working against somebody, there’s variability in the pressure that’s being applied.

So this is a great way to just play with different levels of effort in different lunge positions.

So, if you have questions about this, let us know.

Otherwise, in terms of the amount of time I like for people to do this, I typically tell them five reps per foot position.

If you start adding that up, it’ll give you a lot of opportunities to practice your press.

You can move further away from the band, or closer to the band if you need to, to decrease or increase the intensity.

You can also try different sized bands as you progress.

It’s really one of my favorite drills to just get people moving and kind of exploring these motions.

So, give it a try. Enjoy.

If you have any questions, let us know.

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