Best Lifts For Core Strength


Dumbbell Deadlifts

When you lift, there is no need to do a bunch of sit ups and crunches.  These exercises are great if you are doing light resistance or cardio… they will strengthen your core and give you a base of strength to work from in your other fitness endeavors.  But if you are lifting heavy weight and pushing yourself… there is no need to supplement with “core exercises”.  These exercises will be a waste of your time, as the right lifts will give you a better core workout than leg lift flutter kicks and such.  Instead, try using the best lifts for core strength.

Best Lifts For Core Strength

Don’t believe me?  Ask body builders and power lifters.  They are not busting crunches and doing v-ups.  They are doing big lifts that use EVERY muscle in there mid-section.  Abs, oliques, hip flexors, and back abs (spinae erector).

Almost all effective lifts will use your core to some extent.  But here are the ones that really seem to work for me.

Best Lifts For Core Strength:

  • Front Squat: With the barbell across your chest and your arms crossed (fingers on shoulders), perform deep squats keeping the knees behind the toes….  like sitting in a chair.  The weight on the front of your body will make you engage your core to both lift and stabilize.  And with some significant weight, your whole midsection will be screaming.
  • Sumo Squat (alternative to Front Squat): Hold a single dumbbell upright with hands open and just off from your chest.  Toes out and perform the same kind of squat as the front squat.  Again, this will crush your core.
  • Deadlift: This lift is simple and effective.  With either barbell or dumbbells, simply stand upright.  With knees shoulder width apart, bend down and bring the weight just below your knees while keeping your back straight and slightly bending your knees.  This lift will work every part of your midsection and give you a strong core.
  • Rows: Rows are killer.  Whether they be bent over rows (pulling the bar to your midsection) or upright rows (pulling the bar up to chest), these lifts engage your core and are one of the best lifts for core strength.

Best Lifts For Core Strength

Other great lifts are bench/dumbbell press and pull/chin ups.  These lifts, along with the big lifts described above will sculpt a core stronger than any number of pulsy, crunchy moves.  Pick up some weights, lift heavy, and put in the work… and you will never have to do painful ab exercises again!

Ryan GillespieRyan Gillespie
P90X Certified Trainer / Diamond Beachbody Coach

I currently live in sunny San Diego California and work with people around the country and Internationally on their health and fitness goals. Join my Free Beachbody Team, follow me on Facebook, or friend me on Facebook to join my Free Accountability and Support group. Start today!

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