How to Get Amazing Results With Just a Weight Plate
Last Updated: Feb 19, 2013
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You don't need a ton of fancy training equipment to get fit. In fact, depending on your goals, you may only need one thing: A weight plate. This relatively inexpensive piece of equipment is not only easy to store and use, but it's more versatile than you might think. A weight plate can be used for strength training, endurance work, flexibility, balance and injury prevention. Check out this weight-plate warm-up and workout and see for yourself.
WEIGHT PLATES ARE INCREDIBLY VERSATILE
Even though my gym boasts a number of different training tools, I always find myself using weight plates with my athletes for much more than just loading barbells for added weight. They can drag and push plates for cardio, throw plates outdoors for explosive power, do catch and release work for plyometric training and perform pinch drills to work on grip strength. In fact, if my gym were only allowed to have one type of equipment, it would be a barbell with about 500 pounds of plates. If I had that, there is almost no part of an athlete’s body I could not train.
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PLATE WORKOUT WARM-UP
To prove the versatility and power of this tool, for the following warm-up (and workout), all you need is one weight plate. At first, you can choose to use the same weight plate for all five exercises, but as you get stronger, you can add heavier weights for some of the exercises if you have several plates. This warm-up (and following workout) is to be performed two times per week for 2-3 total rounds.
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PLATE TRUCK DRIVER
Hold the plate from the sides in front of the body with the elbows extended. Twist the plate to one side so that one hand is on top and the other on the bottom of the plate. Return to the start position and then twist in the opposite direction. Repeat for two sets of 20 turns.
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PLATE TRICEP PRESS
Hold the plate overhead from the sides. Lower the plate behind the head, keeping the elbows high. Raise the plate back to the start position by extending the elbows. Repeat for two sets of 12 reps.
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PLATE HIGH PULL
Hold the plate from the top and lowered in front of the chest. Pull the plate up to chin height by raising the elbows higher than the hands. Lower under control. Repeat for two sets of 15 reps.
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PLATE HIP TWISTER
Hold the plate from the sides and twist the chest and shoulders to one side while bringing the knee on that side forward. Quickly reverse the direction and switch the position of the feet. Repeat for two sets of 40 twists.
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MARCH TOWARD FULL-BODY STRENGTH
The four exercises of the “Marching Workout” hit almost every muscle of the body (grip, arms, shoulders, core, legs and feet) and improve flexibility in your shoulders, core and hips. These exercises are also designed to improve balance and coordination. Perform this marching workout after the warm-up. Instead of marching solely using a walking motion, this workout demands weighted movements of both the arms and legs. I suggest starting with a light plate (about 10 pounds) to get a feeling for the demand of the workout. After the first set of each of the four exercises, you can decide if you want a heavier weight. Make sure that form stays intact if you do go heavier.
PRESS AND STEP
You can use an open space and move in one direction for the whole set, or if space is limited, just move back and forth each step. Begin standing with the feet together and the plate held at the chest with the elbows at the sides. Then, while keeping the head at the same height, simultaneously step the foot out in the direction you are moving while pressing the plate forward. Hold for one second and then move the other foot sideways to return to the original position. Repeat for three sets of 20 steps and presses.
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RAISE AND STEP
Begin standing with the feet together and the plate held at the shins with the elbows at the knees. Then, while keeping the head at the same height, simultaneously step the foot out in the direction you are moving while raising the plate overhead. Hold for one second and then move the other foot sideways to return to the original position. Repeat for three sets of 20 steps and raises.
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FRONT LUNGE WALK
Begin standing with the plate held at the chest with the forearm grip shown. Step forward with one foot and lower the back knee until it almost touches the ground. Hold the bottom position for one second and then step forward back to the original position. Then lunge forward with the other leg. Repeat for three sets of 10 steps on each leg.
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FRONT LUNGE AND TWIST
Begin standing with the plate held in the hands at the chest with the elbows close to the sides. Step forward with one foot and lower the back knee until it almost touches the ground. Twist the shoulders and plate in the direction of the front leg. Hold the bottom position for one second and then step forward back to the original position. Then lunge forward with the other leg and twist in that direction. Repeat for three sets of 10 steps and twists on each leg.
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WHAT DO YOU THINK?
Have you tried any of these moves? Which do you like best? What type of workouts do you want to see on LIVESTRONG.COM? Leave a comment below and let us know.
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