Hanging Leg Raises
Primary Muscle Worked: The primary focus of this exercise is the abdominals.
Why I Like It: Although you can’t isolate your upper abs from lower, I certainly feel that I’m able to emphasize the lower portion better with this exercise than I can with lying crunches.
How to: Although you can do this exercise from a roman chair, or from forearm straps, I prefer to do these hanging from a pullup bar. Hanging requires you to use more of your core to stabilize and keep your body from swinging. Keeping your knees together, raise your legs up until they are parallel with the floor. Do not use momentum to swing up. Crunch up in a controlled motion and pause at the top for an extra squeeze. Try to think of your trunk “crunching” to emphasize your abdominals. If you do these with your back straight, you will end up putting more emphasis on your hip flexors. If you want to make this exercise more challenging, do them with your legs straight, instead of bent.
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