Build a Better Body Part IX: Advanced Hips and Abs

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Jill Murphy, DPT, LAT, CSCS

Enough with the talking. Let’s bring on the action. More advanced action, that is for the hips and the abs. So here is this month’s group of advanced hip and abdominal exercises that will step up your routine instead of hibernating through the winter. As the temperatures take a nosedive, don’t just survive, thrive!

Glut Med Wall Push

Glut Med Wall Push

Position: Standing in a door frame or next to the corner of a wall

1. Bend the hip and knee next to the wall or door frame to a 90 degree angle, with the lower 1/3 of your upper thigh contacting the wall or door frame surface.

2. Push out into the wall with the outer part of your thigh, and hold for 5 seconds, then rest for 5 seconds.

3. Perform 10-15x, 1-2x/day on each leg.

Note: You are working the opposite leg glut med muscle during this exercise; i.e. if you are pushing into the wall with your left leg (as shown in the picture), you are actually working your right glut med.

 

Glut Max Power Pumps

Glut Max Power Pumps

Position: On your hands and knees, with your hips and shoulders at a 90 degrees angle.

1. Brace your abdominals by pulling in each side of your stomach towards your belly button, without moving your spine or your ribcage (like you are hollowing each side of your stomach trying to create an hour glass figure).

2. Pull your shoulder blades down and back (in the direction of the small of your back), and tuck your chin up, but keep your gaze looking straight down.

3. Lift one leg up with your knee bent, and pump your leg up toward the ceiling without losing the position of your neck, shoulder blades, and abdominal brace.

4. Perform 10-15 pumps on one leg. Then repeat with the other leg. Perform 1-2x/day.

 

Ab Brace with Bicycling Motion

Ab Brace with Bicycling Motion

Position: Lying on your back with your knees bent

1. Perform an abdominal brace by pulling in each side of your stomach towards your belly button, without moving your spine or your ribcage (like you are hollowing each side of your stomach trying to create an hour glass figure).

2. Lift one leg at a time off the floor.

3. Perform a bicycling motion in the air with your legs, while continuing to brace your abdominals.

4. When you are fatigued, maintain the ab brace until you slowly lower one leg at a time back to the surface, then relax your brace.

5. Perform 3-5x, 1-2x/day.

 

Ab Brace with Stepping Motion

Ab Brace with Stepping Motion

Position: Lying on your back with your knees bent.

1. Perform an abdominal brace by pulling in each side of your stomach towards your belly button, without moving your spine or your ribcage (like you are hollowing each side of your stomach trying to create an hour glass figure).

2. Lift one leg at a time off the floor.

3. Perform a stepping motion in the air with your legs, while continuing to brace your abdominals.

4. When you are fatigued, maintain the ab brace until you slowly lower one leg at a time back to the surface, then relax your brace.

5. Perform 3-5x, 1-2x/day.

 

Prone Plank

Prone Plank

Position: On your stomach, propped up on your toes and elbows, with shoulder blades pulled down and back.

1. Perform an abdominal brace by pulling in each side of your stomach towards your belly button, without moving your spine or your ribcage (like you are hollowing each side of your stomach trying to create an hourglass figure).

2. Lift your body up and hold this position without allowing your hips or stomach to sag, with your body in a straight line, for as long as you can, or aim for 30 or 60 seconds.

3. Perform 3 sets, 1x/day.

 

Side Plank

Side Plank

Position: On your side, propped up on your foot and one elbow, with shoulder blades pulled down and back.

1. Perform an abdominal brace by pulling in each side of your stomach towards your belly button, without moving your spine or your ribcage (like you are hollowing each side of your stomach trying to create an hourglass figure).

2. Lift your body up and hold this position without allowing your hips to sag, with your body in a straight line, for as long as you can, or aim for 30 or 60 seconds.

3. Perform 3 sets, 1x/day.