Fitness

Rock Your Body With These Stone Training Exercises

rock stone training cover image

Working out outside is awesome. The fresh air, the freedom, the free-ness—what’s not to love? Well, naysayers will say, “Working out outside is cool and all, but I need to lift heavy to get swol bro.” I guess they’ve never heard of stone training.

Today we’re going to fix that.

For those who love working out outside and much as I do and who want to throw some variety, fun, and heavy weights into the mix, here’s a list of some of Kim and my favorite stone training exercises.

For a rock solid workout, do all the warm-ups listed here, then pick any five exercises and do three sets of each.

rocks for stone training
You said outdoor workouts don’t have enough weights did ya?

Beach Rock Workout Warm Up Exercises

The Moving Pedestal

moving pedestal stone training exercise

The Movement:

Hoist a stone above your head with your arms locked straight, and walk back and forth along the beach for about 45-60 seconds.

Ideal Rock Size:

Heavy enough that by the end of the 45-60 seconds your shoulders are ready to give up and drop it. If you can barely lift it above your head, or it keeps falling, it’s too heavy.


The Smuggler

stone training
Practicing for motherhood…

The Movement:

Pick up the rock and hold it close to your chest/abdomen, wrapping and interlocking your arms around it, then briskly walk up and down the beach for 45-60 seconds.

Ideal Rock Size:

Heavy. It shouldn’t be easy to get the rock into position at your chest. With that weight, you’ll probably be able to make it about 45-60 seconds before giving in. I use the same rock as that for the Rock Clean exercise listed below.


Rock Squats

stone training workout

The Movement:

A traditional squat, holding a rock out in front of you.

Ideal Rock Size:

For warm-up, pick a medium-light rock that you can do 20 or so reps with. You can also make this a full exercise instead of a warm-up by picking a heavier rock and doing less reps, or doing the squats with just one leg.


Forward Rock’n Roll

The Movement:

Push a big-ass rock forwards along the sand by rolling and flipping it. It’s very important to focus on getting your butt low so as to engage your leg muscles and not put undue strain on your lower pack. And don’t try to muscle it with your arms; consciously engage your leg muscles to move the weight.

Ideal Rock Size:

Start with a medium-sized rock that isn’t too hard to flip over or roll 10-12 times. As you start feeling warm, fresh, and ready for a challenge, progress all the way up to the biggest rock you can find and can just barely roll or flip a few times before exhaustion.


Backward Rock’n Roll

The Movement:

Unless you’ve got rocks for brains, you can probably deduce that it’s the same as the Forward Rock’n Roll, but in reverse, pulling the rock backwards instead of pushing it forwards.

Ideal Rock Size:

Same as the Forward Rock’n Roll.

Stone Training Exercises


Weighted Jumps

The Movement:

Cradling a rock in front of you at chest level, bound along the beach with two-footed jumps. Jump as far as you can each time. Try to land softly and descend into a full, deep squat with every jump. Do about 6-8 reps. Beware: This exercise is way more exhausting than it looks.

Ideal Rock Size:

A medium-light rock. Holding the rock with your arms shouldn’t be the challenge; the challenge should be the burn your legs feel.


Rock Swings

stone training workout

The Movement:

A kettlebell swing, but with a rock. If you’re not familiar with the kettlebell swing technique, here’s a guide.

Ideal Rock Size:

A rock that you can do 8-12 swings of with perfect form. Usually the same rock as you used for the Moving Pedestal and Forward Chuck is about right.


Rock Cleans

The Movement:

A power clean, but with a rock. If you’re not comfortable or familiar with the power clean technique, skip this exercise and get qualified instruction first.

Ideal Rock Size:

Big. Start small to get a feel for the exercise, but once you get familiar with it, see how big you can go! We typically shoot for a rock we can do 5 reps of.


Side Chucks

side throw stone training exercise

The Movement:

Hold a rock down in front of you with your arms completely straight and locked. Get into a semi-squatted athletic stance, swing the rock to your right side keeping your arms straight and loading your weight onto your right leg, then swing back explosively to your left, letting go of the rock and throwing it as far as you can to the side. Your legs and hips should be fully extended on release, with all your weight on your left leg. Do about eight throws, then do the same on the other side.

Ideal Rock Size:

The rock should be heavy enough so that you can throw it about 5 to 10 feet each time, and not so heavy that it slips from your hands as you throw it.


Forward Chucks

forward rock throw

The Movement:

The same movement as the Rock Clean above, but with the added step of exploding forward and throwing the rock from your chest after you’ve picked it up.

Ideal Rock Size:

One that you can do 6-8 reps of. Typically I use the same rock as I use for the Rock Swings and Moving Pedestal.


Overhead Throws

The Movement:

Stand with your legs slightly wider than shoulder-width and holding a rock with both hands and your arms straight. Squat down quickly, letting the rock swing back between your legs, then explode up, swinging the rock upwards with straight arms and throwing it high above your head. Try to throw as high up as possible, not far backwards. After you release your whole body, arms, and legs should be completely extended upwards. Try to get your feet off the ground. Don’t bend your arms at any point in the exercise. Keep the straight and locked at all times.

Ideal Rock Size:

One that you can safely throw at least 10 feet into the air 6-8 times.


Downward Slams

The Movement:

Kind of the reverse of the upwards chucks. Do a power clean to get the rock to your chest, then bend your legs and explode up to pick the rock straight above your head. Once you have the rock directly above you, throw it down to the ground between your legs as hard as you can. Engage your legs by pulling the rock down with them and dropping into a wide sumo squat (wide so that the rock doesn’t crush any of your toes.

Ideal Rock Size:

The same rock as you used for your Moving Pedestal warm-up.


There’s More!

The above exercises are our favorites, but there are just as many other stone training exercises than there are rocks in the forest, beach, or wherever you are. So next time you’re in the need of some fresh air and to pump your muscles, get out there, get creative, and rock your body.

Not Interested in a Stone Training Workout?

Though we love it, outdoor stone training isn’t the only type of exercise we do. Another that we really enjoy is gymnastics-type calisthenics. If you’re interested in the same, check out our list of the best calisthenics training parks in Vancouver.

Or for some more unconventional workouts, check out our pool circuit workout.

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