Easier version of leg raises?

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    Easier version of leg raises?

    The title is self explanatory. I have trouble doing them because my lower back is a weak spot. It gives in long before my abdominal muscles - in most ab exercises.

    #2
    Which kind of leg raises do you mean? Those in the Glutes of Steel challenge? Or side leg raises? Or the classical Jane Fonda leg raises?

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      #3
      If you mean these leg raises, then the regression is generally to bend your knees. Moving your feet closer to your body improves your leverage and makes the exercise easier. Works on hanging leg raises, too!

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        #4
        Originally posted by Nevetharine View Post
        The title is self explanatory. I have trouble doing them because my lower back is a weak spot. It gives in long before my abdominal muscles - in most ab exercises.
        This happens because you're doing the work with your hips instead of your pelvis. In such a scenario, very little ab work and lot of hip flexor work is being done, which is not what we want. This causes the low back pain.

        Try this instead - Do Leg raises on a captain's chair. Lift your legs, leading with your pelvis, in such a way that the person standing in front can see your butt. This is the correct method to ensure that the form is precise. This technique can then be incorporated into a lying leg raise as well as other ab exercises.

        Here's the video. Do watch it to understand the technique clearly.

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          #5
          Originally posted by Nihopaloa View Post
          Which kind of leg raises do you mean? Those in the Glutes of Steel challenge? Or side leg raises? Or the classical Jane Fonda leg raises?
          I'm talking about the kind that BlondeJaneBlonde linked.

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            #6
            Is it cheating to keep my hands under my butt when I do them? I feel like that helps a bit. But yeah, if they should be done using pelvic muscles...well then I have no clue how to do them properly!

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              #7
              Originally posted by Nevetharine View Post

              I'm talking about the kind that BlondeJaneBlonde linked.
              Ah, those didn't even cross my mind

              Maybe you want to look at the leg raises progression detailed in Convict Conditioning? The book has four exercises before you do "real" leg raises in preparations for them. Here's a video where steps 1-5 (where 5 are leg raises) are demonstrated. In the book it's also explained that you should breathe in when you raise the legs and breathe out when you lower the legs (to prevent hernias).

              Edit: When you do leg raises, you should really feel the movement in your abs. Try to engage you core as much as possible when you do them.

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                #8
                Originally posted by Nevetharine View Post
                Is it cheating to keep my hands under my butt when I do them? I feel like that helps a bit. But yeah, if they should be done using pelvic muscles...well then I have no clue how to do them properly!
                That's how i did in the beginning. As i learned the pelvic tilt, the use of the hands went away.

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by Nihopaloa View Post

                  Ah, those didn't even cross my mind

                  Maybe you want to look at the leg raises progression detailed in Convict Conditioning? The book has four exercises before you do "real" leg raises in preparations for them. Here's a video where steps 1-5 (where 5 are leg raises) are demonstrated. In the book it's also explained that you should breathe in when you raise the legs and breathe out when you lower the legs (to prevent hernias).

                  Edit: When you do leg raises, you should really feel the movement in your abs. Try to engage you core as much as possible when you do them.
                  I do try to engage my core...however when I do them, what I actually feel the most is my lower back and my upper leg muscles.

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by Nevetharine View Post

                    I do try to engage my core...however when I do them, what I actually feel the most is my lower back and my upper leg muscles.
                    Oh yes, for a long time, I felt it in my thighs the most.
                    In aforementioned book, the author suggests doing bridges and squats to work the spinal muscles. You often mention your weak lower back, so that's definitely something to look out for. Personally, I have found doing shoulder bridges a lot to help strengthening the back (I often read when doing them).
                    Oh, what also comes to mind for helping your lower back: as a writer, you probably sit a lot in front of a desk. So, whenever you feel like you can afford one, maybe try getting a gymnastic ball to sit on for a time instead of a chair. That's something that really helped me, as well.

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                      #11
                      Originally posted by Nihopaloa View Post

                      Oh yes, for a long time, I felt it in my thighs the most.
                      In aforementioned book, the author suggests doing bridges and squats to work the spinal muscles. You often mention your weak lower back, so that's definitely something to look out for. Personally, I have found doing shoulder bridges a lot to help strengthening the back (I often read when doing them).
                      Oh, what also comes to mind for helping your lower back: as a writer, you probably sit a lot in front of a desk. So, whenever you feel like you can afford one, maybe try getting a gymnastic ball to sit on for a time instead of a chair. That's something that really helped me, as well.
                      I actually have a medicine ball. The problem is that my desk is too high for it. Lol However, it would be nice to sit on whenever I'm sedentary.

                      Yeah, I guess I need to start making back strengthening a routine thing. Maybe thrice a week? Or should I make it daily? I know Darebee has some specific workouts for it.

                      With squats, I honestly barely feel a thing in my back. When I start feeling something, its also in my upper leg muscles. (The ones above the knee, specifically). I can squat down quite low whilst still keeping a perfectly straight back.

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                        #12
                        Use your medicine ball to do hyper extensions! And ya, hands under butt is fine to start. Knees slightly bent is easier, as is just doing top 2/3 of motion

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                          #13
                          Originally posted by 'rin View Post
                          Use your medicine ball to do hyper extensions!
                          Ooh, that's a great tip, never would have thought of this! Thanks!

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