Build A Core That Will Rival A Gymnast’s

These killer gymnast exercises will not only increase your flexibility, but will rack up your core strength.


Men's Health |

Core stability. Sheer athleticism. Yup, training with rings separates Olympians from the rest of us. Use them to turn everyday strength moves into a test of balance and coordination, hitting those tiny stabiliser muscles barbells ignore. Perform twice a week and stop going round in circles. After training your core with these exercises you’ll like it so much you may want to put a ring on it (and we wouldn’t hold it against you).

1/ Support Position Hold. A good starting point for any ring training session, this works your core stabilisers from the off. Push through your palms to hoist yourself above the rings (A) and finish with your arms straight, shoulders rounded forward (B). Hold your body still. Sets: 3 of 30 seconds.

1

2/ Ring Dip. Set up in the support position, hoisting yourself up, as before. Lower your body by bending at the elbows, keeping them tucked in, until your chest is level with your hands (A). Contract your triceps to push back up (B). Keep it controlled. Sets: 3 Reps: 8.

2

3/ Inverse Row. Set up the rings at around waist height (or raise them to make the move easier) and hang underneath. Engage your core so your body forms a straight line (A). Row up toward the rings, pausing when your lats are fully contracted (B), then lower. Sets: 3 Reps: 10.

3

4/ L-Sit. Are you sitting comfortably? Well, not for long. Set up in a support position (A), then slowly raise your legs in front of you, straightening them until parallel with the ground (B). Maintain the hold for as long as you can manage with proper form. Sets: 3 To Failure.

4

5/ Bulgarian Pull-Up. This hits your delts and shoulder joints – prep for your first iron cross. From a dead hang (A), pull up and bring your hands out, ending with palms facing in (B). Reverse. Sets: 3 Reps: 6.

5

6/ Ring Push-Up. Lower the rings and set up with your arms and body straight (A). Bend your elbows, pausing when your chest and hands are level (B). Explode up; don’t lock your arms. Sets: 3 Reps: 10.

6

7/ Ring Roll-Out. Hold the rings, palms down (A), and slowly tilt forward, pushing your arms out (B). Stretch as far as you can without losing form. Keep constant tension as you return. Sets: 3 Reps: 8

7

8/ Skin The Cat. As cruel as it sounds. From a dead hang, lift your knees and thread them between your arms (A). Do a full turn, but don’t touch the ground (B). Now raise your hips to reverse. Sets: 1 Reps: 5.

8

9/ Pull-Up To Lever. From a dead hang, squeeze your lats and biceps to pull up (A). Raise your legs as you lean back, extending your arms, palms forward. End with your body straight (B). Sets: 3 Reps: 6

9

10/ Bodyweight Fly. Begin in press-up position (A). With arms straight, spread your hands to the sides. Pause when you feel a stretch in your chest (B). Squeeze your arms to lift back up. Sets: 3 Reps: 8

10

READ MORE ON: core muscles upper body

Copyright © 2019 Rodale Inc.