3 Landmine Lower Body Exercises You Haven't Seen Before

Landmine training and the countless exercises you can perform are extremely beneficial and can be a key component in your training program. Give these 3 a shot!

Landmine training and the countless exercises you can perform are badass, empowering, extremely beneficial, and can be a key component in your workout program.

I am a huge fan of landmine training, and have been for a long time.

To be clear, while using a landmine attachment is great, it is not mandatory. You can rest the barbell against a secure surface like a wall, box/other object, or on a no-slip surface.

So really, all that is required to perform landmine exercises is a barbell and perhaps several weight plates.

Here are 3 landmine lower body exercises you might not have seen or tried before:

1. Landmine Squat Sways

Adductor strength is extremely important, yet is often overlooked. This innovative exercise strengthens the adductors, improves the controlled mobility in the hips, and improves lumbo-pelvic stability.

Coaching Tips:

  • Set up a barbell so it is lengthwise. You may anchor the barbell against a stable surface like a wall, weight plate, or box, or on a no slip surface. You may also use a landmine attachment.
  • Position your body so the end of the barbell is in the center of your body, and is just underneath your hips.
  • Adopt your preferred foot width and positioning. Your feet will likely be significantly wider than during your regular squatting stance.
  • Now perform a squat and lower yourself down to a range where you are able to maintain proper form. Maintain this depth for the duration of the exercise. Your torso should be in a relatively upright position.
  • Before each rep (when you are in the center position), take a deep breath in (360 degrees of air around your spine), brace your core (360 degree brace around your spine), and tuck your ribs towards your hips (close the space in your midsection).
  • While remaining in the squat stance, extend your one knee and press your body laterally, and transfer most of your weight to your opposite leg. You should really feel your adductors working.
  • When you reach your end range, your leg should be in a squat position, and your knee should be in line with your toes. As for your other leg, your knee should be close to fully extended.
  • On the planted/squatting side, form a tripod base by placing your weight on the mid to back portion of your foot, and keep your toes down, particularly your big and baby toes. Pretend you are suctioning or screwing your feet to the ground.
  • The barbell should not travel ahead of your body. For the duration of the exercise, keep your arms rigid, lats engaged, and pretend you are crushing something in your armpits.
  • For the duration of the exercise, your torso should remain in a relatively upright position. Do not allow your lower back to hyperextend or round, ribcage to flare, or your torso, spine or hips to rotate. Your hips should remain in a level position (I love to use the water glass analogy).
  • On the planted/squatting side, do not allow your knee to fall inside or outside of your foot. Also, in many instances it is perfectly all right if your knee is above, or even slightly in front of your toes. The key is that you do not allow your weight to shift to the front of your foot, and your heel must not leave the ground.
  • In terms of breathing, do what works and feels best for you.
Regression:

Make this exercise easier by using less weight.

Progression:

Make this exercise more challenging by using more weight.

2. Landmine Reverse Nordic Curls

This unique exercise strengthens the quads (particularly eccentrically), improves shoulder and scapular stability (both should remain in a relatively fixed position for the duration of the movement), and lumbo-pelvic stability.

I had never seen this exercise being performed before, and the idea to try out the exercise came to me one night. The outcome couldn’t have been better. I absolutely love this exercise and have noticed a huge difference in the eccentric strength of my quadriceps.

To be very clear, you should be proficient at performing the bodyweight movement before you add the landmine component.

Coaching Tips:

  • Set up a barbell so it is lengthwise, and is in line with the center of your body. You may anchor the barbell against a stable surface like a wall, weight plate, or box, or on a no slip surface. You may also use a landmine attachment.
  • Get into a tall kneeling stance. Adopt your preferred knee width. Your head, torso, hips, and knees should be in a stacked position. While I prefer to keep my feet plantarflexed, do what works and feels best for you.
  • Grab onto the top portion of the barbell, and extend your arms so they are in an overhead position. This will be the starting position.
  • Before each rep, take a deep breath in (360 degrees of air around your spine), brace your core (360 degree brace around your spine), tuck your ribs towards your hips (close the space in your midsection), and squeeze your glutes.
  • Now, while keeping your body in a stacked position from your head to knees, take 3-5 seconds and use your quads to control the movement as you lower your body down to your full range. Use a range that allows you to maintain proper form. This is extremely important.
  • Once you’ve hit the bottom position, use your quads to bring your body back to the starting position. In the bottom position, your arms and torso should form about a 90 degree angle.
  • The more you lean back, the more challenging the movement will be. Conversely, the more upright your body remains, the easier the movement will be. Start out very conservatively.
  • Exhale after you have pressed away from the ground and are approaching the top position.
  • For the duration of the exercise, your head, torso, hips, and knees should remain in a stacked position. Do not allow your lower back to hyperextend, ribcage to flare, your torso, spine or hips to rotate, or your weight to shift from knee to knee.
Regression:

Make this exercise easier by using less weight, by using a smaller range of motion/keeping the body more upright, or by using bodyweight only. Remember, ONLY add in the landmine component once you’ve mastered the movement with your bodyweight, NOT before. This is extremely important.

Progression:

Make this exercise more challenging by using more weight, or by using a greater range of motion/leaning back more.

3. Landmine Squats + Rotational Single Arm Presses

While this is a squatting movement, the ultimate goal of this exercise is to improve full body rotational power. This exercise also improves shoulder and scapular controlled mobility, and lumbo-pelvic stability.

A huge benefit of landmine training is that landmine “power” exercises provide similar benefits to Olympic lifts, but are easier to learn, and are generally lower risk. As a result, because explosiveness is a key component in enhancing performance in many sports, and even in every-day life, many more people, ranging from elite athletes to regular fitness enthusiasts, will be able to reap the benefits of power training.

Coaching Tips:

  • Set up a barbell so it is lengthwise. You may anchor the barbell against a stable surface like a wall, weight plate, or box, or on a no slip surface. You may also use a landmine attachment.
  • Adopt your preferred foot width and positioning. Angle your body so your torso, hips, and feet are positioned at about a 45 degree angle to the barbell.
  • Hold the top of the barbell with one hand. The barbell should be in line with your armpit, and your forearm should form about a 45 degree angle with the floor.
  • On your squatting side (leg that is on the same side of the body as the hand that is holding the barbell), form a tripod base by placing your weight on the mid to back portion of your foot, and keep your toes down, particularly your big and baby toes. These parts of your foot should remain in contact with the floor for the duration of the exercise. Pretend you are suctioning or screwing your foot to the ground.
  • Before each rep, take a deep breath in (360 degrees of air around your spine), brace your core (360 degree brace around your spine), and tuck your ribs towards your hips (close the space in your midsection).
  • Now perform a partial squat and transfer your weight to your back leg. Keep your torso in a relatively upright position. Once you hit the bottom position, simultaneously pivot your back foot, rotate your hips and torso, extend your elbow and press the barbell to a range where you are able to maintain proper form.
  • Exhale after you have pressed away from the ground and are approaching the top position.
  • When you are in the top position of the squat, “row” the barbell back in to your body. In fact, your ability to control the movement of your shoulder blade plays a big role in your ability to perform this exercise. Do not keep your shoulder blade pinned. It is meant to move. As you bring the barbell in towards your body, stop just before your elbow touches your side.
  • For the duration of the exercise, your head, torso and hips should remain in a stacked position. Do not allow your lower back to hyperextend or round, ribcage to flare, and make sure your torso, spine and hips rotate as a unit.
  • Do not allow your knees to fall inside or outside of your feet. Also, in many instances it is perfectly all right if your knees are above, or even slightly in front of your toes. The key is that you do not allow your weight to shift to the front of your feet, and your heels must not leave the ground.
Regression:

Make this exercise easier by using less weight, or by performing the movement less explosively.

Progression:

Make this exercise more challenging by using more weight, by adding band resistance, or by performing the movement more explosively.

Author's Note: From Tuesday, June 25th until June 29th at 11:59pm PST, you can take advantage of the special sale price and can get The Ultimate Landmine Program for only $57. After that the price will increase to $97.