Mountain climbers are a great conditioning tool that (when performed properly) not only get your heart pumping, but also work the core, shoulders, and hip flexors.
However, when done improperly (you’ll still get your heart rate up), but you’ll miss out on all the other great benefits of this exercise.
Things to AVOID when performing the mountain climbers:
- Pulling the knee too far toward her chest. When the foot is pulled up too far this may cause the hips to shift upwards causing the spine to round.
- Placing the hands too far forward. Be careful not to place the shoulders behind her wrists, which takes away the core challenge of this movement.
- Planting the foot into the floor. Again this takes away from the core activation as the foot is now supporting the movement.
- Carefully stack the shoulders, elbows and wrists in a nice straight line. This will take pressure off your shoulders and help keep your joints happy.
- Pull the knee in but keep the foot off the ground. This will help maintain a flat back position and work the hip flexors and core at the same time!
- Keep the back nice and flat. Pull the shoulders back and down away from the ears and keep the lats engaged. This will help keep your back flat and safe.
This movement can also be altered to add variety! You can spice up your mountain climbers by bringing your knees cross-body / outside your elbows, or even placing your feet in the suspension trainer (TRX). No matter what variation you do, ensure your form is spot-on to get the biggest calorie-burning, muscle building benefits.