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Instagram / @jessiegraffpwr
Jessie Graff literally kicks butt for a living. If you haven't heard of her before, it's because the former gymnast and college pole vaulter has been mostly slaying it behind the scenes as a stuntwoman in major blockbuster movies (including Wonder Woman and The Dark Knight). But if you're familiar with the elite athlete, it's probably because she was also the first woman to ever complete Stage 1 of American Ninja Warrior. Oh, and did we mention she has a black belt in tae kwon do? V chill.
The self-proclaimed "Superhero in Training" has also garnered a huge Instagram following thanks to posts showing her monkeying around and having fun doing what she does best: crushing borderline-insane fitness feats. Recently, she shared a video of herself doing tire-barbell snatches (that would be a barbell with tires racked on it instead of plates) while working out with fellow Ninja Warrior Maggi Thorne. As if the Olympic weightlifting-style move doesn't sound hard enough on its own, she's doing it while standing in the sand, in the ocean, being hit by waves. You honestly have to see it to believe it:
A post shared by jessie graff (@jessiegraffpwr) on Jan 12, 2019 at 9:35pm PST
"[Maggi] has a genius idea to add stability work (aka waves) to our post-spring lifting," Graff wrote alongside the video. "Don't judge [me] for my poor form. Hers are actually good. "
Thorne shared a similar video to her 'gram doing a slightly different move (called the clean and jerk) saying that she had "the best beach day ever of fun and training."
A post shared by Maggi Thorne🎀 (@nvr_gvup) on Jan 12, 2019 at 6:22pm PST
There's no denying that these athletes make it all look easy—and while it takes practice to actually nail them, the movements do a whole lot more than just make you look like a badass. "Implementing [the clean and jerk] into your strength program is essential for building full-body strength and gaining strength in the overhead position," Eric Leija, senior kettlebell coach with the Onnit Academy in Austin, TX, previously told Shape.
"That puts a high demand on the core musculature, forcing you to learn how to maintain a braced core while wielding a load in different positions, from the bottom of your squat to the racked position and overhead," he says. The snatch—a similar movement demo'd above by Graff—is just as killer for developing this type of strength and skill. If anything, the fact that you immediately hoist the weight overhead ups the difficulty even more. (Feeling inspired? Here are some essential barbell exercises every woman should master.)
Now, imagine doing that with the added instability of being on sand, while waves plunge toward you, after doing sprints—and you'll be one step closer to being a Ninja Warrior like Graff and Thorne. It goes without saying this probably isn't something you should try at home. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯