Sled pulls are a drag. Pun intended. Sled push and pull are some of the most challenging functional and endurance focused exercises you can perform in the gym. Functional movements, mimic real human movement, unlike exercises such as the bicep curl, or pec fly. Hence, they have a specific function or intent. We’re going to discuss exactly how to do sled push and pull, as well as the benefits, and how this movement, can help you take your performance and body composition to a new level.
What Is Sled Pull And Sled Push
The sled push and pull are functional training movements, that use a weighted sled placed on a turf surface. Sled push is used to induce greater stimulation through the lower body and posterior chain, such as the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, lower back, calves, and core. The sled can provide a ton of great benefits, in terms of improving total body strength, burning more body fat, and improving athletic performance.
Sled Push And Pull Muscles Worked
Sled Push and pull works the lower extremities as well as the core. This movement is considered a full body functional movement, since it is recruiting all of the muscles in your lower body such as the quadriceps, glutes, hamstrings, calves, and your lower back. Additionally, you are also using your core for body stabilization, as well as your arms, shoulders and upper back to further power your push and especially the pulling motion. Thus, you are using all of the muscles in your body making the sled push and pull very effective full body strength training movements.
Sled Push And Pull Benefits
The sled push and pull is an excellent exercise to increase strength and hypertrophy in your legs, especially your quads, glutes, and hamstrings. This movement, targets the leg muscles in a big way and with the right rep protocol, can help increase more strength and muscle mass.
One of the best indicators of athletic performance is power output. In exercise, the definition of power, is the rate of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) or cellular energy used over a single or multiple maximal effort bouts against a submaximal load. Peak power is the greatest output or production of work over a given amount of time. Power accounts for a combination of strength, velocity, force and neuromuscular adaptations.
Pushing a load with your body, requires force or power, to initiate the push and pull. With greater power, you will essentially be able to perform more workload and volume, past the point of exhaustion and improve athletic performance.
By incorporating the sled push and pull into your training protocol, you’ll inevitably increase your muscular endurance. More endurance translates to better athletic performance, increased time to exhaustion, and the ability to produce higher volume workouts being able to sustain prolonged periods of aerobic and anaerobic exercise.
4. Burns Body Fat
The sled push and pull is a full body compound exercise, meaning that you are using multiple muscles, secondary muscles, joints, and your core all at one time, thus producing a far greater caloric burn, as compared to performing a strength training movement in isolation. More work and higher intensity means more calories burned, which helps put your body in a caloric deficit and achieving a loss in body fat.
How To Do Sled Push And Pull
For The Push
- Load a prowler sled with the appropriate or a challenging weight.
- Stand facing the sled at arm’s length.
- Grip each bar with your arms straight, with your elbows bent.
- Make your back flat and hinge at your hips keeping your spine neutral and head up.
- Drive your feet into the ground, utilizing and recruiting your glutes, hamstrings and quadriceps.
- Keep your core tight then place one foot in front of the other as if you were sprinting.
- Push the sled as fast as you can and keep your breathing steady.
For The Pull
Depending on the attachment, which could either be a strap, handles, or waist strap, I’m going to describe how to sled pull with the waist attachment.
- Load the sled and attach the waist strap securely around you.
- Face the sled, and slowly dig your heels into the ground, holding onto the strap and putting one foot behind another, as if you were walking backwards.
- Keep your back neutral, and straight, and your core braced, digging with each step back.
Sled Pull And Push: Takeaway
Adding functional training exercises into your training routine, can help advance your athletic performance, as well as increase total body strength, mobility and core stability. Not only that, the sled push and pull can significantly benefit your body optimization goals, helping you build more muscle mass and reduce body fat. This is a great cardio acceleration move and can be used as a great accessory movement, to jack up your heart rate between strength training movements, and help you get to your goals faster.
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