Sandbag Single Arm Press


The Sandbag Single Arm Press demands respect! It builds tremendous functional strength by recruiting more muscles over the whole body to help perform the lift.

When pressing overhead with 2 hands, every muscle between the sandbag in the hands and the feet balancing against the floor participates in the exercise. Legs, core, back and the obvious shoulder and arm muscles all work together. Performing the lift with one hand places the load off your central axis, forcing the core muscles to engage more than normal in order to prevent rotation. The strength gained by resisting this rotation results in the ability to produce more force in rotational activities commonly used in sports – such as passing, kicking, punching, throwing, etc.

In addition, using a sandbag will build superior shoulder stability because the weight is constantly shifting around and as this happens the rotator cuff muscles work overtime.



Start in single arm rack position holding centre handle:

  1. Elbow inside the frame of the body, arm against chest
  2. Press straight up to lockout position
  3. Pull the weight back down into rack position

Key pointes:

  • Engage muscles of the lower body and core before commencing press
  • Maintain tension in the core throughout lift.
  • Bag against body in rack position
  • Keep elbow in frame of body as pressing up and maintain steadiness as the bag shifts around the arm on the way up
  • In lockout position the bicep should sit next to ear, arm is vertical, chest is proud and watch for hyperextension (too much curvature) of the lower back (lumbar)