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Knee Raises Training Database Bodybuilding Articles Knee Raises

An Exercise So Rigorous, It'll Bring You To Your Knees.

Are you ready for a knee-slapping good time?

Jim Carrey and Chris Rock aside, this five-minute routine will have your insides roaring all right, but not exactly with high-pitched laughter. No, knee raises are not all that funny, but they certainly are helpful if you’re looking to ignite the fire inside your soon-to-be-smoldering midsection.

To perform this abdominal exercise, you’ll need an overhead bar and perhaps a set of wrist straps, although the latter is not quite a necessity. However, a gung-ho attitude is imperative because knee raises are among the most rigorous of all abdominal exercises.

* Take a sturdy grip on the overhead bar, either with or without the use of wrist straps. Your arms should be shoulder-width apart or perhaps a little bit wider.

* As you hang from the bar, your feet are hopefully not touching the floor. With your arms fully extended and your torso hanging freely from the bar, bend your legs at the knee. Then, proceed in raising your knees as high as you can, toward your chest, squeezing the abdominal muscles at the point of contraction.

* When your knees are raised, hold for a second or two, before lowering your legs toward the floor. Repeat the motion for as many repetitions as possible until you can no longer raise your knees above your waistline. Try three intense sets for a great burn.

* And when performing knee raises, be sure not to swing your legs. Rather, allow your abs to do the work as you slowly, effectively cruise through the range of motion. Keep the rest of your body still – no jerking, no squirming motions. When you’ve reached the point of your set where the smooth range of motion is no longer manageable, it is time to rest in favor of your next set.

* The more advanced you become in the exercise, the closer you will close in on the straight-legged version of the knee raises, a considerably more difficult exercise where you keep your legs fully extended (instead of bent at the knees) as you raise them toward the ceiling.

Also, there are ways to add resistance to the repetition, wearing heavy shoes or ankle weights that will make the raising motion far more grueling.

While the abdominals, mainly the rectus abdominis, are primarily worked in the exercise, knee raises will also target the rectus femoris in your quadraceps.

However, variations of the knee raises, exercises where you twist your waist to the side, will work those hard-to-develop obliques.

Take care,

Matt Canning

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