Ben Bruno’s Total-Body Landmine Circuitby Jen Sinkler
My friend Ben Bruno — or Benny, as he prefers to be called — is well-known for his innovation and creativity when it comes to exercise variations (and we aren’t talking about different to be different here, we’re talking different because it’s awesome). So, when I found myself in Boston for a weekend this past April, I asked him to put me through something suh-weeeeeet.
He delivered. It was one of those workouts that looks unassuming but ends up working you over from head to toe and building strength in a most delightful way. (And in this case, a very joint-friendly way.)
This workout takes very little equipment and very little space. One piece of equipment it does require is a landmine (called the “Extreme Core Trainer” at PerformBetter.com), which looks like a home plate in baseball with a metal sheath attached to the top. How it works: You secure one end of a barbell inside the sheath, and you’re able to rotate the bar in any direction from the other end.“I like the landmine for a few reasons,” says Bruno. He went on to list them:
1. You reap the benefits of cross-body loading, firing up your core and glutes like nobody’s business.
2. You get a stellar training effect with less overall load than with barbells, making it safer for the joints while still working your muscles to the max.
3. Because you’re holding the thick sleeve of the barbell, you tax your grip and work your forearms.
Another piece of equipment you’ll need is a pair of Valslides (pictured below), which are slippery plastic discs that you can use to decrease resistance between your feet (or hands) and the floor. This means you have to use more of your own musculature to control the movements.Bruno recommends completing three rounds of the following six-exercise circuit, doing eight reps of each exercise. For demonstrations of and coaching cues for each exercise, peep the video. (p.s. Apologies for the shaky videography and the Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure vibe to the commentary. I swear we were sober.)
Ben Bruno’s Total-Body Landmine Circuit -Reverse Lunge with Valslide
8 reps of each exercise, 3 rounds, rest as needed
-Single-Leg Romanian Deadlift
-Step and Press
-Deep Squat Anti-Rotation Arc
For another fab landmine exercise, check out Bruno’s post, “Skater Squats With a Twist.”