Tip: The Oblique Builder

A strong core takes more than just ab training. Give this exercise a shot.

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The Hanging Leg Raise, Frontal Plane

Normally, the hanging leg raise is performed in the sagittal plane. You lift your legs up to target the rectus abdominis. With this side-to-side variation, you target the obliques.

Don't expect the range of motion to be as pronounced as it is with a regular hanging leg raise. This should feel like a small, yet very controlled movement.

Hang from a pull-up bar and use your obliques to lift your legs as far as you can to the side. Imagine there's a wall directly in front of and behind you and you can only move in between the walls.

Do multiple sets of 5-10 controlled reps. Do not alternate sides; do one side at a time to discourage side-to-side momentum.

  1. Keep your legs fully extended and squeezed together. This creates a longer lever that you have to move through space, which adds intensity.
  2. Create a slight amount of torque against the bar by pulling down with the corresponding arm in which you're moving your legs toward. Simultaneously press up into the bar with the "away" arm.
  3. Once you can do several reps in a controlled manner, try holding the end range position for time.
Drew Murphy is a gym owner and personal trainer located in Tiffin, Iowa. Out of his facility, he trains clients using a wide range of strength and conditioning methods.  Follow Drew Murphy on Instagram