Monday, December 17, 2007

Stone Lifting for Strength and Conditioning

Training to become stronger and physically fit is pretty much a simple process; you have to work hard, be consistent and use safe exercise techniques. What you choose to exercise with, whether it’s machines, weights, bands, stones or your own bodyweight, is a personal preference. Sometimes, however, you may not have access to the “latest and greatest” equipment or you’re too busy to make time to even get to the gym. Or maybe you just enjoy being a “garage lifter” and want to add some variety to your training, regardless of your situation, stone lifting is an excellent way to improve your strength and conditioning. Remember, all movements should be done deliberately – with control and very little momentum!

Here are just a few of the exercises you can do with stones:

Overhead Press (one arm or two)
Curl (one arm or two)
Front Squat
Tricep Extension
Clean & Curl
Clean & Press
Front Raise
Hammer Curl
Stone Hold
Stone Carry
Lift & Load
Clean to shoulder/chest
Front Squat with Press
Push Press

The following are some sample stone workouts you can try using the “Strength Training Guidelines” discussed earlier.

Workout #1

This workout involves only using one sized stone. Use one (1) set of an all-out effort (get as many repetitions as possible) with each exercise and take no longer than 60 seconds rest between exercise movements. Some exercises will allow for higher than normal repetition ranges while other movements will not – the key is to work the set to momentary fatigue. This simple workout will have worked every major muscle group in your body directly and indirectly and will certainly elevate your heart rate if you are giving 100 percent effort on each exercise, especially if you take little rest between movements.

- Standing Overhead Press
- Squat holding the stone at chest height
- Stiff leg Deadlift
- Hammer Curl
- Stone Lift (Clean) from floor to shoulder - alternating sides for each rep
- Crunch with stone on chest

Stones are a great tool - take up little space and challenge your muscular and cardiovascular systems to the maximum. Anyone interested in purchasing Slater's Stones, please feel free to contact me. - Fred Fornicola