The lower abs are one of the most common trouble spots in the human body. They tend to be very difficult to tone and lose fat from. The Hanging Leg Raise exercise targets the lower abs and helps to strengthen the entire abdominal muscles.
However, this exercise alone cannot burn lower belly fat. Not at all. Remember, there is no such thing as spot fat reduction so you can do ab exercises all they long, you will not be able to magically melt away the stomach fat.
That being said, hanging leg raises are one of the hardest and most challenging stomach exercises there is. A lot of people can’t even do a single rep of these and being able to complete 20 is a sign of powerful abs. (note: One machine which simulates this movement is the Ab Coaster)
How do you do Hanging Leg Raises
To do this exercise you need some kind of overhead bar that can bear your weight. You can buy a door pull up bar or use one at the gym.
Hold the bar with both hands in an overhand grip. I recommend using workout gloves to avoid abrasion. Keep your hands at about shoulder width apart. Hang down from the bar with outstretched arms. Make sure your body is completely straight and that you’re not swaying back and forth. Keep your eyes forward and your head straight.
Raise both legs together while keeping them straight. Try to get them to a 90 degree angle with your body. Make sure the movement is symmetrical between both legs. Avoid swaying your body or bending your arms. The movement should be done by the abs first and foremost. Exhale while you’re raising your legs.
Once your legs are at a 90 degree angle, hold that position for a second and lower both legs down slowly while inhaling.
- If you find that the exercise is a bit too difficult for you, do with with bent legs or use a Captain’s Chair to support your back and arms.
- If you feel too much strain in your arms, you can use ab straps.
- I’d do this exercise even if you can only do 2, 3 reps. You will improve quickly.
- Do this exercise at the beginning of your abs workout to make sure your abs are as fresh as possible.
- Don’t forget to breathe normally throughout the exercise.
- If you feel strain in your hips make sure to stretch them out afterwards and work them out separately.
The Hanging Leg Raise is an excellent lower belly exercise which can help you to tone and strengthen your abs. While it won’t be enough to flatten your abs, it can indeed prove a great addition to your abs workout.
This is an advanced workout so don’t feel bad if you can’t do it yet. It is something that you can work on and improve with time and some determination.