Over a month ago, I introduced the step as a tool to modify the intensity of your workouts. Today, I want to bring you guys yet another game-changing piece of equipment that will—quite literally—ramp up your workouts and transform your body.
Meet the slant board. This seemingly simple tool (and a model favorite) is both very challenging and extremely rewarding, as it will sculpt out a new set of definition in your legs and get deeper into the glute muscles causing them to lift and plump up even further. That said, it’s something I save for more intermediate to advanced workouts, implementing the slant board with clients only after substantial leg and hip strength, stability, and proper glute activation has been established.
Since I know you all love my science lessons, we’re gonna really dive into it on this one. Let’s start with foot positioning, as it’s a foundational component to my method that comes into play all the more with the slant board. The positioning of the foot is very influential on the body, as chain reaction biomechanics (my area of expertise) all originates from the foot. By changing foot positions, you can then target muscles in the rest of the body in a number of different ways. Putting the foot on a downward slant is one of the best ways to challenge yourself and take your body to the next level.
Using the slant board places more pressure on the feet than standing on a flat surface. This makes it a great tool to turn on those muscles in the feet and condition them in ways that they may not get challenged in every day walking but are important in things like sports or dance—anything that requires a lot of footwork. Trust me, the feet do much more than walking; strengthening them and establishing better biomechanics in the foot will, in turn, enable your thighs and glutes to work properly, as well.
Now that we’ve got the foot down, let’s move up the leg. By stepping onto the slant board, we put the ankle into a relative extension, sending more of the pressure into the glute and less on the thigh muscles as we go through the exercises. When the joints (specifically the hip, knee and ankle) aren’t deep into flexion, the butt is more active. Test it for yourself: by simply taking a step back with your heel up and then with your heel down, you can feel the difference in engagement through the glute. This same concept is what we implement with the ankle and foot positioning on the slant board.
Next, by shifting the body weight forward, we’re forced to activate the calves and thighs in order to stabilize, requiring constant engagement to keep yourself from falling forward. Working the thighs in this way is my number one way to tone them up without any inflammation, as it’s an authentic, natural muscle reaction. Pairing this with my other favorite way to work the thighs—accelerating and decelerating motions—is what truly results in transformation. The minute you step onto the board, you’ll notice how all the muscles in your lower body automatically fire up and engage to establish this balance.
When performing exercises like the P.sits or leg lifts, this forward momentum of your body becomes locked in place due to the slant board. Your thighs stay engaged, locking in any forward or rear motion, thus forcing your glutes to activate even more to keep the upper body vertical and solidify that mind-muscle connection.
As my wife and clients like to point out, the best thing about the slant board, aside from the results, is how it trains your body to be strong and stable when you’re walking in heels. Walking in heels can ruin your body, cause pain in your feet, knees, hips, and back. It knocks you out of proper postural alignment and the effects can wreak havoc on your body. Using the slant board will train your muscular structure to maintain proper alignment, keeping the pressure out of your joints, standing up tall and walking strong when in heels. With this in mind, and understanding how it doubles down on defining your legs and lifting your butt, the slant board is a definite must-use before any type of event, vacation, or runway show.
Heels can be great in enhancing your look, but if they are misaligning your body, (which is obvious to the observer) it will have your knees pushing forward, pelvis posteriorly tilted, upper body slouching forward due to the tilted pelvis, chin pushed forward and head sinking into your shoulders due to the collapsing structure below it. All of this can lead to those heels not being as flattering as you might want them to be. Apart from the toning and lengthening, P.volve is all about establishing a strong muscular structure with proper posture and alignment, to bring out that look of confidence and poise—and let me tell you, the key to actually feeling confident is to look the part! Once we’ve gotten down the P.volve basics, the slant board is precisely what we need to help drive that home.
So, are you ready to take our workouts up a notch? If so, head on over to the equipment shop and pre-order our newly released P.volve Slant Board, and get ready to roll—you’ll be seeing these in the streaming videos real soon!
Post by Stephen PasterinoHi, I'm P, founder of P.volve. I'm passionate about fitness, wellness, and all of the healthy lifestyle choices in between. Get more out of your workouts by staying up to date with our Blog, where I share all of my fitness secrets.
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