Core Exercises for Volleyballers

No matter if you’re an indoor or beach player, having a solid core is essential for any volleyball player. It's not so much about being strong as . The difference for a volleyball player is  that a stable midsection allows you to transfer force through your body and aids in the development of movement mechanics that protect your knees.

And the good news is that your core is also one the easiest areas of the body that you can strengthen.

No weights, no bands and no gym equipment needed. All you need is  your own body weight and consistent reps. And no need to overthink this - you’ve likely done them before.

1.

Far and away, the plank is the best thing you can do for your core because it actives various muscles throughout your body. It's basically the biggest bang for your buck. Start by getting into a push-up position. Bend your elbows and rest your weight onto your forearms and not on your hands. Your body should form a straight line from shoulders to ankles.  Engage your core by sucking your belly button into your spine.  As there aren’t actual reps here, the goal is to hold your body in a straight line for at least 60secs (and see if you increase the length of time each time).

2.

Similar to the plan described about the side plank is a variation on the same theme, but instead of using two arms to balance yourself you use one arm at the time.

Start by lying on your right side, in a straight line from head to feet, resting on your forearm. Your elbow should be directly under your shoulder. With your abdominals gently contracted, lift your hips off the floor, maintaining the line. Keep your hips square and your neck in line with your spine.

Again hold for 60+ seconds and repeat on the left side.

3. Lying Hip Raises

Also known as the ‘bridge”, lying hip raises are a great way to target your core and glutes. Begin on your backwith your hands by your sides, your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Make sure your feet are directly under your knees. Tighten your abdominal and buttock muscles. Raise your hips up to create a straight line from your knees to shoulders. Squeeze your core and try to pull your belly button back toward your spine.

4.

Despite it's heroic name, this move is a bit more suited for Clark Kent. Ist a low impact exercise that stretches out your abs and activates all the muscles you’ve got so you stay loose and enjoy the benefits. For the Superman, start by lying face down on a mat with your arms stretched above your head (like superman). Raise your right arm and left leg about 5-6 inches off the ground (or as far as you comfortably can). Hold for 5 - 10  seconds and relax. Repeat with the opposite arm and leg.

5. V-Sit

The V-sits are one of those exercises that only the “pilate pros” can hold without a deep grimace crossing their face. Regardless of how much they may hurt, they’re also a great exercise for volleyballers to do because they strengthen not only your core, but your hip flexors as well.

Begin in a seated position, contract your abdominal muscles and core, and lift your legs up to a 45-degree angle. Reach your arms straight forward or reach up toward your shins as you are able. Hold this "V" position for several seconds to begin. As you get stronger, hold the position longer. Return to your starting position slowly. Repeat this entire movement several times.