I’m a huge fan of using doublets or triplets in our strength program to sneak in some much needed, but often overlooked, hip exercises for the smaller stabilizer muscles. They are so important for both injury prevention and optimal hip performance during gymnastics skills. As a busy coach, I know all too well hard it can be to find time for everything. This side plank clamshell/reverse clamshell exercise is one of my “go to” exercises to add into the active rest slot during strength work.
This exercise gets a lot done besides just the hip work. It’s great for
Lateral core work, biasing anti side bending but still focusing on midline bracing and control
Weight bearing shoulder dynamic stability (down arm holding body up)
Works active external and internal hip rotation, which helps bias different glute medius and piriformis on the top leg. This strength helps theoretically enhance leaps, jumps, running, and more
Works glute medius and minumus strength on the down leg (high EMG activity reported in this exercise). This aspect hypothetically transfers well to weight bearing power jumping skills, ideal sprinting mechanics, landings, and good hip control during tumbling