Ab Roller - How to do Ab Rollers and barbell rollouts exercises

Why are Ab Rollers such an effective abdominal exercise

One of the problems with regular situps is the suggestion that it can cause lower back strain as it rolls the body into jackknife position {courtesy the psoas muscle}. Machines such as the Ab Isolater, Ab Flex and Ab rollers have used this fact to build better crunch machines.

Ab Rollers or AbRoller exercise can be done with either an ab roller device or a barbell. It can be called as the hardest ab and core exercise. Learn how to blast your abs with ab rollers now.

How to do Ab Rollers Exercise with a Barbell/AbRoller

Preparation: Pick a medium sized barbell and load it with 10 pound plates. Lock the barbell with collars. You can use the AbRoller as is.

Step 1: Kneel on the floor holding the barbell or ab roller with an overhand grip, arms shoulder width apart as shown in the figure.

Check the position so that your shoulders are right above the barbell/AbRoller. Rest your lower body on your knees alone with feet raised or resting on your toes. Make sure your knees are comfortable.

Start the exercises with back more rounded than shown below.


Step 2: Now slowly roll the loaded barbell/Abroller forward, away from your body. Your hips and torso will fall slowly to the ground, but should not be allowed to touch the ground.

Maintain a constant tension in your core muscles.

Caution: There is NO ideal as such in the exercise world. Everything is relative. It depends on your ability. If you cannot reach figure 4, then reverse move from figure 3 and slowly build your power and core stamina.

Step 3: Using your core muscles alone {as much as possible} pull the barbell backwards until it reaches the starting position.

High Performance Tips

1. Do not stick your butt out when starting. Keep hips vertical.

2. Roll forwards as much as your flexibility and strength allows you.

3. Don't start the exercise too slow as you might tire prematurely.

4. If it is very difficult for you to come back to start position then do negatives only wherein you roll the barbell or Abroller out, drop your hands and come up on your hands.


1. Swiss Ball Rollouts: Here you replace the Abroller with the Swiss ball as it can be rolled out too. You can place your hands and forearms onto a Swiss ball instead of using the Abroller as device and do the same move to add variety. Make sure that the under-surface is smooth and avoid going too far as you might have to visit a dentist.

2. Straight leg rollouts:


You have done the abroller verson with kees bent but the real test comes when you try the rollers with straight legs and unsupported knees.

Also check out other core exercises like crunches, hanging leg raises and outer and inner unit core exercises.

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