At Home Dryland: Medicine Ball Throw Downs
The ability to control our center of mass while producing force is the key to staying centered on our skis for fast skiing. In addition, a powerful start can mean the difference between a great run and one that shatters the timing system.
Medicine ball throw downs on an unstable surface help us improve upper body power, trunk stability, and joint stability all at the same time. This movement challenges your nervous system to recruit the right joint and trunk stabilizers in the right amount at the right time to provide a solid platform for producing maximal upper body force. Check out the tips and video below for a breakdown!
- Maintain an athletic position with chest up and a forward posture
- Look ahead
- Maintain level shoulders and a quiet upper body fore and aft
- Maintain a hip to shoulder-width stance
- Keep ankles and knees soft and slightly flexed
- Use a medicine ball that will bounce and start with a light ball
- Extend the ball overhead and throw fast and straight down into the ground
- Focus on using your core muscles to stabilize your center of mass
- Challenge yourself by throwing the ball harder and bouncing it higher
- Once you’ve mastered the basics of this exercise, try other unstable surfaces (e.g. balance board) to continue to challenge your nervous system
Avoid:- Moving your upper body and center of mass fore and aft
- Looking down at your feet
- Using a heavy ball that can’t be thrown fast – speed is key
- Throwing the ball at an angle – causes the ball to bounce away from you
- Straight knees
If you haven’t already, integrate medicine ball throw downs on an unstable surface into your dryland training. Be sure to perform this exercise in a safe area and only after a proper warm-up. Know your limits, stay in control, and have fun.
Great stuff. I would be interested in seeing more ski-focused exercises and workout regimens.