T Nation

Ab Exercises for PL?


I avoid ab exercises like the plague and I think it's started to catch up to me. It's become a pretty glaring weak point, especially in my squat.

Tate always talks about how the Westsiders used to do pretty much nothing but back and abs, but I don't think he's ever gone too far into what those ab exercises were.. what are the ab exercises you guys do to keep your lifts strong?


Pause situps and ab rollouts


Standing band crunches, legs lifts with or without weight, weighted situps, db side bends.....those are the ones i prefer


I usually do barbell rollouts, but I just switched to standing ab pulldowns today.


Courtesy of STB.


Thanks aqua. Yea, do those.


Hm.. Think the gymnastics stuff helps, too? http://fbcdn-sphotos-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/302471_10100109167020937_72600567_47464381_1705633259_n.jpg

I always figured it was enough, but I think some more dedicated work is in order now. The front squat holds look amazing. I'll try that out on Thursday.


Standing ab wheel rollouts. Landmines.


straight leg sit-ups with weight, hanging leg raises, planks, and stuff that hits the hip flexors like 6 inches, scissor kicks, flutter kicks, etc, are all staples in my program. stick to the basics.


See, the issue is... I'm also a gymnast and acrobat. I feel like the core work has to be a lot more intense than planks and flutter kicks when I can front lever and planche. Band-resisted standing ab-wheel roll-outs have been a favourite of mine, for instance. And those front squat holds look pretty good, too. I feel like the "standard" gamut of ab/core exercises are wasted on gymnastic bodies and I really don't feel like they do anything.


No way man. Flutter kicks will rip your shit up. I think they put 90lbs on my raw squat.

You are right. As a gymnast and competetive strength athlete, you are going to need more intensity. I don't know how we as a society have become such pussies when it comes to 'core' work. Want to work the shit out of your abs? Hold something really really heavy out in front of you and walk with it for a while. Front squat holds are good. You will probably need to make them harder. I would suggest front squat walk outs with suspended weights (plates hanging from jump stretch bands, chains hanging off the bar not touching the floor, etc.). Just walk out, let the weights settle, then walk it back into the rack. These are brutal. I really like an exercise that I have been calling 'fat guy abs.' Lay on the floor with a band wrapped around your feet (the other end is connected to a rack) and basically do a laying knee-up. These work my abs in a similar position that I deadlift in... minus the laying on the floor part.

Heavy ssb squats without a belt work well too.


I'm definitely going to have to try the FS walk outs w/ suspended weight and the 'fat guy abs'.


I loved this. Thanks for posting the link. Typically anything ab related bores me and I tend to stick to hanging leg raises, bar roll outs and count my front squats and push ups as ab work.

The fall outs are great. We don't have blast straps or rope. It turns out a doubled up old electric extension cord wrapped around your hands works. Also love worthy are the side bends.

I tried something recently with hands on the floor and feet resting in bands suspended in my rack. You pull your feet towards your chest with straight legs. Someone called them war pikes. I thought I made them up. Regardless, I like them.


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One of my favorite odd ab exercises. I have included one arm presses in my arsenal just for this reason.


Blast Strap Ab Fallouts and Ab Wheel


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Thanks, STB and everyone else. Pretty helpful.


I am in the same boat as you. Light and the core is pretty strong.

Palloff Presses are great for the obliques, and you can always go heavier.
Val slide exercises are great, because they are easy to load with chains, plates etc.
All unilateral pressing and pulling exercises.


Am I the only one here that thinks as a gymnast, you are probably already getting a good enough "core" strengthening? Are you positive it is your abs that are your weak points? I have never seen a gymnast with weak abs