August 22, 2013
Want a medicine ball, dumbbell and kettlebell all rolled into one, and at a fraction of the price you’d pay for all three pieces of fitness equipment combined? You should get a SandBell. From metabolic conditioning and total-body strengthening to increasing grip strength and improving coordination, this versatile training tool can be used to create a killer workout experience. Whether you’re looking to break a sweat at home or the gym or outside under the warm summer sun, the SandBell allows you to train functionally, efficiently and creatively, and to get some serious results in the process. Grab a 10-pound SandBell—a personal favorite in my fitness toolbox—and swap some of the exercises you may already be doing with another piece of equipment for three of my favorite total-body moves.
Instead of Using a Kettlebell…
Try: SandBell Alternating Single-arm Swing With Clean and Press
The Breakdown: Stand with your feet hip-width distance apart and grasp the top of the SandBell in your right hand using an overhand grip. Begin by performing a single-arm swing, drawing the Sandbell back between the legs as you hinge at the hips then thrust the hips forward, generating power from your lower body to raise the SandBell up to shoulder height. Once at shoulder height, flip the SandBell to rest in the right palm just above the shoulder—almost as if you were a waitress holding a tray of food—performing a clean. Keep the right thumb hooked around the edge of the SandBell for added control as you extend the right arm up, pressing the SandBell overhead. Reverse the movement by lowering the SandBell to shoulder height before flicking the wrist and resuming your overhead grip at the top of the SandBell. Lower the arm down in front of the body and complete another swing, sending the SandBell between the legs once again. As you press forward with the hips and extend the arm back out in front of the body at shoulder height, release the SandBell mid-air momentarily, switching hands to grip the top of the SandBell with your left hand. Complete the entire sequence on the left side, aiming to complete a total of 8 to 10 repetitions on each side.
Instead of Using a Medicine Ball…
Try: Sandbell Combo Slam
The Breakdown: Begin in a squatting position, pushing the hips back and bending the knees as you hold the SandBell at chest level, gripping onto each side. Inhale and press the SandBell overhead as you rise onto the toes. As you exhale perform a slam, forcibly releasing the Sandbell to the ground. Once released, quickly jump or step back to a high plank position, placing the hands on the Sandbell in a triangle formation—pointer fingers and thumbs pointing toward one another—with the hands positioned directly underneath the chest. Keep the elbows close to the body as you perform a triangle push-up, lowering the body down to just above the Sandbell and then slowly pushing back up to your starting plank position. Use the strength of your entire body to jump the feet up toward the SandBell, coming back into a low squat position. Once again grab the sides of the Sandbell and repeat this sequence for a total of 8 to 10 reps.
Instead of Using a Dumbbell…
Try: Sandbell Rear-foot Elevated Split Squat with Single-arm Row
The Breakdown: Stand with your back turned to a bench or sturdy chair, about 3 feet away, and place the top of your right foot on the top of the seat. Grip the top of the SandBell with your right hand and slowly lower down into a lunge. Keep the left heel down on the ground and the left knee tracking in line with the second toe as you hinge the torso slightly forward and lower the SandBell toward the ground, parallel with the left foot. As you press back up to your starting position, perform a single-arm row on the right side, keeping the elbow close to the body as you lift the SandBell up toward the right side of the rib cage. Complete 8 to10 reps and repeat on the opposite side.
Jessica Matthews, MS, E-RYTContributor
Jessica Matthews, M.S., E-RYT is assistant professor of exercise science at Miramar College. As a leading fitness expert, writer and educator Jessica is a regular contributor to numerous publications, including Shape and Oprah.com. She holds a B.S. in physical education teacher education from Coastal Carolina University and M.S. in physical education from Canisius College. She is a certified Personal Trainer, Group Fitness Instructor and Health Coach through the American Council on Exercise (ACE) as well as an Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (E-RYT) through Yoga Alliance and trained stand-up paddleboard (SUP) yoga instructor. Prior to teaching at Miramar, Jessica worked full-time ACE, serving in a number of key roles including exercise physiologist, certification director and senior health and fitness editor. Her past work also includes serving as aquatics director at Conway Medical Wellness and Fitness Center and designing health and physical education curriculum for grades K-12. Full Bio Jessica Matthews »