The Benefits of the Landmine Press + Sample Programs

The Benefits of the Landmine Press + Sample Programs

In this week’s Ask Me Anything (AMA) sneak peek OPEX Fitness Founder, James FitzGerald, shares the benefits of one of his favorite exercises, the landmine press.

If you’re currently enrolled in then OPEX Coaching Certificate Program (CCP) you can submit your question to James here.

New to OPEX Fitness? Learn our fundamentals to be a fitness professional and sign up for our free coaching course.

What is the Landmine Press?

The landmine press is a diagonal pushing exercise. It features a barbell set in a landmine adapter or pushed against a wall. It can be used as a substitute for overhead pressing, a way to fix asymmetries, and add variation to an exercise program.

To set up for the landmine press get a barbell and put one end in either the corner of a wall or a landmine adapter, and load the other end. Then assume a half-kneeling position, tall-kneeling, or standing position. Finally, grab the end of the barbell and press up and away from the body. If performing the half-kneeling variation use the hand on the same side as the knee on the floor.

Muscle Groups Used in the Landmine Press

During the landmine press the triceps, shoulders, chest, and core musculature are used, with the glutes and upper back performing a supporting role to stabilize. This a great exercise to use as a substitute for overhead pressing.

The 5 Main Benefits of the Landmine Press

  1. Builds Motor Control
    • The landmine press builds motor control because the client needs to control the pressing and the eccentric motion in the scapula and tricep.
  2. It Fixes Left to Right Imbalances
    • The contralateral nature of the landmine press is great for fixing left to right imbalances as the midline from the neck down has to be activated during the exercise.
  3. It Can be Substituted for Overhead Work
    • This movement is great for clients that struggle with overhead pressing as it is more horizontal in nature. Learn how to determine whether or not your clients should be overhead pressing in this free assessment course.
  4. It Can be Substituted for Horizontal Pressing
    • The landmine press can be substituted for horizontal pressing if the client needs to take time away from horizontal pressing or as accessory work to improve their horizontal pressing strength (usually determined within the assessment.)
  5. It’s a Primal Movement
    • The pushing/punching motion of the landmine press is primal and benefits a client’s function. 

Sample Programming for the Landmine Press

A1) Single Leg Landmine Romanian Deadlift @30X1; x8-10/leg x 5 sets, 45 seconds rest after each leg

A2) Landmine Press in Half-Kneeling @30X1 x8-10/arm x 5 sets, 45 seconds rest after each arm

In this instance, the Half-Kneeling Landmine Press is paired with a bending exercise, the Single Leg Landmine Romanian Deadlift, to decrease the workout’s overall time. The half-kneeling position also challenges core stability, hip flexor length, and glute engagement. The tempo is slower and volume is higher to increase the time under tension and develop motor control and muscle endurance. 

A1) Landmine Press in Tall-Kneeling @2010; 6-8 reps/arm x 3 sets, 60 seconds rest after each arm

A2) Seated Cable Row @2010; 6-8 reps x 3 sets, 90 seconds rest

In this instance, the Landmine Press in Tall-Kneeling is paired with a horizontal pulling exercise, the Seated Cable Row. The push and pull movement pattern pairing uses complimentary muscle groups and increases workout efficiency. The tall-kneeling position is chosen as a challenge to core stability and to encourage glute engagement for a neutral pelvis position. The volume and time under tension develops the client’s strength endurance. 

A) Landmine Press @10X0; 3-5 reps/arm x 4 sets, 90 seconds rest after each arm

In this instance, the Landmine Press is performed alone at the beginning of a strength training session. Time under tension and volume are lower, meaning intensity is higher. The standing position is more advanced than kneeling variations, as there is greater room for error with more joints involved.

Learn When to Program the Landmine Press

The landmine press is an effective exercise that when programmed properly can help your clients reach all types of goals. But coaching is not just about prescribing exercises.

A professional coach is capable of understanding their client’s unique goals and what it will take to get them there. Learn how to establish goals, conduct movement assessments, and the fundamentals of individual program design when you download this free Professional Coaching Blueprint.


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