T Nation

Do Leg Lifts Work Lower Abs?


ok so I didn't really know whare to post this, but im a beginner, so i assumed this was appropriate. DO leg lifts really work your lower abs? I've heard from some that they do, and form others that the abs are simply being used as stabilizing muscles and its really just the hip flexors doing the work? can any of ya'll give me your opinion or evidence whether its a good abdominal exercise or not? and if it isn't can you give me a good alternative to work lower abs (i know its all one muscle and all, the rectus abdominis, but its debatealbe whether you can emphasize seperate parts, but thats really not what i'm asking)


leg raises are awesome. Try this circuit also http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izDf0MCR2DU

Yeah your core does get hit pretty good especially say on things like front squats. It's a combo of everything though. Still some good abwork after training won't hurt.


From what I can remember reading, the most important thing to do to really work your abdominals while doing leg lifts is to make sure that you tilt your pelvis at the top of the movement. I'll try to find a link to back this up, but I know from having done it that it works!


Lower abs and upper abs are the same muscle!
There is no such thing as working upper and lower abs its the whole muscle or nothing.


Leg raises work primarily the hip flexor muscles like the psoa. If you tilt your tilt your pelvis at the top of the movement, it essentially makes a crunch motion which works the abs. And TNUT is right there is no such thing as upper and lower. The location of the hip flexor muscles is at the bottom posterior side of the abs. This is why people say it works their lower abs and that is why they fell a burn there.

At least that is what Fred Hatfield says.


do you mean leg lifts like squats? go and do heavy zerchers then report back your findings


A very good way to target abs (and not the psoas) is to lie on the floor, leg bent at 90 degrees, lower back in contact with the floor. Lower your legs, trying to keep lower back touching the floor ALL THE TIME; raise back your legs if you feel your lower back is raising from the floor.
Most likely, at the beginning, you'll have to raise legs before your feet reach the floor; it's ok! In few weeks, you'll be able to do a full-ROM movement.
You can start doing Garhammer raise ( http://www.tmuscle.com/free_online_article/sports_body_training_performance/staggered_ab_training ) , an easier variation, very effective!


Dude, you're 6'3", 165 pounds, and trying to get bigger. The last thing that should be on your mind is a good exercise for the "lower abs."

Take a look at this thread that you started the other day:

I answered your questions about a home gym setup, and I was asking you about your current training program.


Well said.


good eye chris.

that kid is 2" taller then me and 50lbs skinnier.....wowzers!

he must be ript!


yeah i am pretty skinny, and am trying to bulk up a little, but i still want my lower abs toned and strong. and when i say leg lifts, i mean like the ab exercise you do on the floor or bench. not the leg exercise. may i ask what a Zercher is?


Your "lower abs" will be toned and strong when you get bigger. Go train, and after a year, if your "lower abs" still aren't where you want them to be, come back and ask questions.