Jackknifes, ARGH!

Today was my second attempt at workout A from Stage 1 of the New Rules of Lifting for women.  For the most part it was great – a challenging, varied workout that hits my whole body.

But the jackknifes.  Oh, the jackknifes.

There’s just something about them.  I have a love/hate relationship in the making – I just want to love them, but at the moment they’re not making it easy.  See, it’s a great whole body exercise that forces you to engage the entire core to maintain stability.  Trouble is, I can’t!  I can do maybe 4-5 reps in a row, and it feels great – I can feel my whole core working and I start to really sweat.

And then I fall off the ball.

And after mayb 20 seconds rest, I can manage another 3-4 reps.  Then 2-3.

I don’t get it.  Well, I do – I’ve always had horrendous balance and proprioception – but I don’t know what to do to go about improving matters.  I guess all I can do is keep doing jackknifes every time my workouts demand it, and try to get an extra rep or two every time.  It’s so frustrating because I feel pretty strong in the rest of my workout (increased my seated row weight today), but right at the end the damn jackknifes are there to trip me up, rub my face in the mud and laugh at me.


Maybe next time I’ll manage 6 reps…


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Laura
    Jun 23, 2009 @ 18:20:18

    You are doing great! The stability ball just takes some getting used to. Jackknives are kind of an advanced exercise IMO, and you might want to work up to them by just holding a plank with your shins/feet on the stability ball. Not that that’s easy, but it’ll get you used to the ball. Then when you feel ready you can add in the knee tuck.


  2. Julie
    Jun 23, 2009 @ 21:18:40

    I used to fall off the ball all the time too before I started doing planks on a regular basis. The suggestions Laura gave are perfect. Balancing on the ball is a challenge and the knee tuck is probably enough to make you fall off. Give it time. It’s one of my favorite exercises now!


  3. Nancy K
    Jun 25, 2009 @ 10:46:14

    Thanks for the encouragement guys! I’ve had some serious DOMS in my core since I did that workout so even though I’m not hitting the rep ranges I’m meant to, it must be working. Hopefully I’ll gradually be able to add reps until I’m where Lou and Alwyn want me. I watched one of the PTs with a client this morning, and he got her to do jackknives with her arms resting on one of the pads of the kaiser stretching rack – another option for me.

    I’ll try all your suggestions and keep you updated. This is one exercise I’m determined to nail!


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