Strength Exercise of the Week: Half-Kneeling 1-arm Landmine Press
Written on January 17, 2012 at 5:53 pm, by Eric Cressey
We’ve been utilizing the half-kneeling 1-arm landline press more and more with clients at Cressey Performance over the past few months, as it is a strength exercise that affords a number of full-body benefits.
First, with the trailing leg positioned appropriately, it’s a static hip flexor stretch that is even more effective because the athlete is cued to activate the same-side glutes and brace the core, so you’re effectively increasing stiffness at an adjacent joint to help “solidify” the newly acquired range of motion into hip extension. As I’ve written previously, increasing stiffness can be a good thing.
Second, the core stability benefits occur in a number of contexts. Because the load forces the athlete to resist extension, it serves as a great anterior core stability exercise. And, because it’s loaded asymmetrically, it serves as a great lateral and rotary core stability exercise.
Third, I like all asymmetrical-loaded upper-body strength exercises because they train thoracic mobility and dynamic stability of the scapula, which you simply don’t get on the same level with push-up variations and bilateral upper body exercises (although those categories do provide unique benefits in their own right).
Fourth, because of the thicker handle at the end of the barbell, you’re getting a different grip and forearm stimulus.
Key Coaching Cues:
1. Set up so that there is a subtle (but not aggressive) stretch on the trailing leg hip flexors. Activate the glutes on that side as well.
2. Brace the core tightly to resist extension and rotation.
3. Press straight out, not across your body.
4. Don’t allow the elbow to “migrate” past the body too much. Instead, pre-tension the scapular stabilizers to make sure that the shoulder is not anteriorly tilted as the humerus (upper arm) extends back to neutral on the eccentric.
5. Keep the chin tucked so that the cervical spine is in neutral.
6. Load with weights smaller than 25, as the 45-pound plates tend to get in the way.
This is a great exercise for loading the upper body without really beating up on the joints. I particularly like it with some of my throwers who have gotten stronger in the upper body, as it’s a good alternative to having baseball guys throwing really heavy dumbbells around, particularly as they are getting more aggressive with their throwing programs.
Give it a shot and let me know what you think!
Sign-up Today for our FREE Newsletter and receive a four-part video series on how to deadlift!