Skip to main content

Straight Leg Lifts

By June 14, 2016December 2nd, 2023No Comments

Do you remember straight leg lifts? Remember how they arched / stressed the low back? Remember how you felt the pull / burn in the front top part of your legs? Remember when you placed your hands under your butt? Lol

The reason is because everyone started at end range. Why do you think people put their hands under the lower back while performing leg lifts? It is because the abdomen region is now working as a stabilizer to protect the lower back. What muscles are the prime movers in a leg lift? If you answered the hip flexor group, rectus femoris, psoas and iliacus you are correct. What.. no spot reduction, no lower abs? There are no lower abs in the human body- that is geography not anatomy. However you can research a gentlemen named Kendell who coined the term “lower abdomen region” which is different from training the upper and lower abdomen. Many articles can be found on Kendell’s research such as “Pelvic Floor Stability and Trunk Muscle Co-activation”. We need to understand the safe range, what activates, and how to correct poor exercise techniques.

Another explanation would be; the legs are just extensions off our core a lever arm. When you throw them out and away from the pelvis, it creates a pull on the pelvis. Moreover the rectus abdominis acts like a stabilizer to maintain congruence with the entire lumbo pelvic hip complex. This is now a stress and strain on the lower back and pelvic area, and a host of microscopic tears being created. We all must understand how to decrease specific disproportionate forces that trickle through the system and create muscular stress, strain and imbalances. Straight leg lifts a great way to tighten your hip flexors, and strain your lumbar spine. Did you ever see someone hold onto one’s ankle and then throw your legs away from the pelvis at different angles? Holy rip the shi_ out of your muscles, and strain the back!! End of TRUTH.

Dave Parise CPT FPTA MES