- Abdomen: Straight abdominal muscle
(Musculus rectus abdominis)
Ab Wheel Rollout is a suitable substitute for similar exercises in or as a supplement to various training plans.
Ab Wheel Rollout: Basics and alternatives
Involved main muscle groups:
Ab Wheel Rollout
The ab wheel rollout might not be a common sight in the gym, but it’s a fantastic exercise for targeting your abs and offers flexibility with various equipment options. For most folks, doing ab rollouts at home with a suitable ab roller is the best choice. You can usually find one for under 50 dollars/euros, and it’s compact and easy to store. Despite its affordability, it’s still great for targeted abdominal muscle training.
Ab rollouts are a highly effective core exercise, but it’s crucial to focus on proper form. The exercise may seem simple at first, but executing it correctly is quite challenging. Improper form can be uncomfortable for your back and decrease the workout’s impact on your abs.
In addition to the ab wheel, you should also get a soft pad for your knees. Special foam knee pads work well, or you can use a towel, cushion, or gym mat as an alternative.
Kneel on the workout surface and place the ab wheel in front of you.
Firmly grasp the ab roller with both hands and position it on the floor directly in front of you.
Engage your abs, so they slightly move inward. You can round your back a bit while tightening your abdominal muscles.
Roll forward by extending your arms. Your back will straighten a little, but your abs should remain tense. Your legs and hips will lower along with your torso.
In the stretched position, continue kneeling with your hands securely on the ab roller in front of or above your head.
To return from the stretched position, engage your abs and pull your torso back evenly. Your hips and the ab wheel should move backward together. Avoid using your hips to pull your body back.
If you overextend your back and arms, you’ll shift the focus from your abs to your upper back (latissimus dorsi). To avoid this, consciously engage your abs before starting the exercise, resulting in a slightly rounded back.
When moving back up from the stretched position, make sure the movement doesn’t come from your hips. If you pull your hips back first, you’ll reduce the workout’s effectiveness. Your hips and ab roller should move back together, engaging your abs from the stretched position.
Also, only roll forward as far as your body tension allows. Going too far forward and losing tension will force you to use your back for the movement. Make sure you perform the exercise according to your physique and let your core do the work, particularly in the beginning. As you practice the exercise more, you’ll be able to progress the movement further over time.