Focus, flexibility, balance, core strength and endurance are all key objectives to keep in mind when striving to achieve your goals in polo. Whether your goals are to play the best you can play at your level or to improve your handicap, your fitness is integral to thinking bigger!
Why is core strength so important for performance in polo?
Well if you think about the core as the foundation of anything, a healthy core means a healthy structure. Most people think of the core as a nice six-pack, or strong, toned abs, but the truth is that the abdominal muscles are a very small part of the core.
The abs have very limited and specific action, and what I refer to as the ‘core,’ actually consists of many different muscles that stabilize the spine and pelvis, and run the entire length of the torso. Your core is responsible for providing power, stability and strength to your body. Core muscles also make it possible to stand upright and move on two feet.
These muscles help control movements, transfer energy, shift body weight and move in any direction. A strong core distributes the stresses of weight-bearing and protects the back. When thinking about improving your game of polo, it quickly becomes apparent that core conditioning is fundamental to perfecting and strengthening your different swings whilst maintaining balance
Keeping this in mind, it’s important to do core conditioning exercise programs that target all these muscle groups effectively. There are three planes we need to focus on to achieve that and as you can see, they target all the biomechanics of your polo motions.
- Sagittal Plane (forward and backward motion)
- Frontal Plane (bending side to side)
- Transverse Plane (rotating side to side)
An exercise to work the Sagittal Plane
This is a fantastic piece of equipment for working the Sagittal Plane. You can get one of these wheels in any fitness shop
An exercise to work the Frontal Plane
An exercise to work the Transverse Plane
Try and make a little time everyday to do some core exercises such as the ones I am doing here and I promise it will be a game changer! Repeat the exercise between 10 to 15 times each to make sure you are really working those muscles!
Other fantastic exercises to do to strengthen the core include;
- Plank exercises
- Side plank exercises
- Basic push ups
- Push ups
- Back Bridge
- Hip Lift
- Oblique twist
- Plank on a balance ball
- Lunge with twist
And finally, let’s not forget that aside from improving your polo, you will have a killer flat stomach as a bonus! Good luck with your training, I hope you find these exercises helpful,
Until next time, Keep Active and Stay Healthy,