The barbell often gets a bad rap.
It’s typically associated with more advanced, heavy and intense weight lifting.
This can be a bit intimidating, especially if you are new to training.
Take those advanced barbell movements, add weight to them and add the fact that you may be new to them and your risk of injury significantly increases.
Enter the landmine.
Landmine training is when you use one end of the barbell while the other is placed in the landmine holder or placed in a corner of a wall.
By using only one end of the barbell, you aren’t able to use as much weight. This results in less loading on your spine and an overall decrease in injury, making landmine training the perfect alternative to traditional barbell exercise.
The unique, free-motion of the bar allows you to perform a variety of exercises in all planes of motion. This has a great effect on your total-body strength, core stability and cardio, making the landmine the perfect tool for building muscle and burning fat.
Let’s get into our 5 favorite barbell landmine exercises!
#1 Landmine Squat to 2-Arm Press
The landmine squat to press is the ultimate total-body exercise. It challenges the strength of your lower body, the stability of your abs, the strength of your upper-body and your cardio. For more of strength emphasis, keep the reps on the lower end and the weights heavier. To improve your cardio, keep the reps high and the weight light.
- Start with feet shoulder width, toes slightly pointed out
- Bring bar to chest and keep abs braced
- Initiate movement by sitting back and down into squat
- As you come up press bar overhead – this is all one motion
- Finish tall with arms straight
- Start with 3 sets of 8 reps
#2 Landmine Rotations
The landmine rotation is a hidden gem and is a great way to build the strength of that trouble spot -- your obliques (lateral abs). By rotating the bar to the right and left side of your body, your lateral abs are forced to work extremely hard to keep your spine and body stable. You will feel these the next day! The bar motion during this movement should resemble tracing the numbers on a clock. The bar starts at 12 o’clock, moves right to 2 or 3 o’clock, back to 12 o’clock and left to 9 or 10 o’clock.
- Start standing with knees slightly bent, abs braced
- Place bar at your chest and press it out so arms go straight (12 o’clock)
- With no body movement bring bar to the right (2 or 3 o’clock)
- Your right arm should bend slightly, while keeping left straight
- Return to starting position (12 o’clock)
- Move bar to left (9 or 10 o’clock)
- Start with 2-3 sets of 6-10 reps/side
#3 Landmine Reverse Lunge to Press
Warning: these are tough! The reverse lunge is a great way to improve balance, coordination and single-leg strength while the press is great for strengthening those shoulders. If you are new to the reverse lunge keep the motion small to start.
- Start tall with bar in one arm in front of shoulder
- Drop back into reverse lunge, keeping weight in front foot
- As you drive up from lunge press barbell overhead
- Finish tall with glutes squeezed
- Start with 2-3 sets of 8 reps/side
#4 Landmine Squat
The landmine squat is one of our favorite squat variations. The weight placement allows you to go heavy and build some serious lower-body strength, with much less risk of an injury compared to your normal barbell squat. Your legs will be feeling these for days!
- Start tall with weight in hands, arms straight
- Break at the knees and drop into squat
- Keep heels down and weight back
- Go as low as possible with a neutral spine position
- Finish tall with glutes squeezed
- Start with 2-3 sets of 8-10 reps