Introduction: What Exactly is an Abs Roller?
“How to Use Abs Roller” is one of the most commonly asked questions in my own gym.
An abs roller or ab wheel as it is sometimes referred is a small fitness device that is primarily used to work out the abdominal muscles, also known as core muscles.
An abs roller is a piece of equipment that consists of a wheel or rotating ball with two handles on each side.
Basically, the user should be on their hands and knees and hold the handle with their arms stretched forwards.
The next step is to stretch forwards and allow the roller to roll forwards which engages all of your core muscles.
This exercise can be done on any flat surface, such as the floor or carpet, and can also be done from a standing start for more advanced users.
In my opinion, they should not just be called ab rollers but full-body wheels… The reason for this is they work almost every muscle in your core body and have many benefits to your health and fitness
Here is a list of areas an ab roller can strengthen and work your body:
Your whole interior core
- Rectus Abdominis (Commonly referred to as your Six-Pack muscles)
- Transverse Abdominis muscles
- External oblique muscles
Your Upper body
- Lat’s (latissimus dorsi)
- Triceps (triceps brachii)
- Rear Delts (posterior deltoids)
Which Muscles Are Targeted By an Abs Roller?
Targeting the rectus abdominis muscle, sometimes known as the “six-pack muscle,” is the major advantage of ab rolling. This muscle moves your ribcage toward your spine when your body is flexed.
- Abdominal External Oblique – The defined muscle which controls the rotation of your torso
- Iliopsoas Muscle – The strongest hip flexor which assists in the external rotation of your femur
- Rectus Abdominis – The main 6-pack muscle.
- Erector Spinae – Between the skull and the pelvis, they extend on either side of the spinal column
- Transverse Abdominis – The deepest and most transverse of all the abdominal muscles
- Chest Muscles – Pectoralis Major, Rotator Cuff & Pectoralis Minor
- Biceps – Your biceps are engaged throughout an ab roller exercise repetition
Why You Should Use an Abs Roller
Abs Rollers are very health-beneficial and cost-efficient investments.
The benefits of ab rollers
- Very simple to use
- Take little time to set up and perform
- Can be used by anyone (ranging from beginners to athletes)
- Reduce Tension in the body
- Strengthen your core muscles
- Improves the ability to hold your body up against gravity
- Assist with yoga
- Tones six-pack and improved definition
- Can improve your form on primary exercises (squats, deadlift…)
- Cheap to purchase
- Difficult to do anything wrong
- Only requires body weight to work
As you can see above, there are so many benefits to using abs rollers. Personally in my own pursuit to becoming shredded, I initially overlooked ab wheels. I believed they were just a gimmick and would not assist me in achieving my goals… I was wrong.
All workout exercises using free weights will stimulate your core body muscles in one way or another. Therefore, it is absolutely crucial that your core is strong and able to support heavy weights to prevent injury.
Because an ab roller is quick to set up, there is no reason why you should not use one at the beginning of every workout. This will simultaneously warm you up, and also strengthen and activate your core muscles to get ready for your workout routine.
Routinely engaging your core muscles with an abs roller will reduce tension and inflammation in your muscles. This will greatly assist recovery times and allow you to lift heavier personal bests.
Improve your posture
Working your Rectus Abdominis with your ab wheel will also contribute to improving one’s posture. The average office worker will suffer from back or core strength problems. This is a flaw in the way office chairs are designed. An Ab roller will strengthen your core and allow you to hold your back in a straight and healthy posture.
If a six-pack is your main aim and why you want to become shredded, you should 100% buy and use an abs roller at home to use in between your workout routines at the gym. This will allow you to build up a good set of abdominals ready for when your body fat drops low enough to see them.
How to Use Abs Roller
99% of people will not use an ab roller correctly in the gym. Because of all the muscles which engage when you perform an ab roll, doing it wrong can really cause a lot of unnecessary tension and cause injury to your core body.
1- Begin on your knees, Core muscles tensed, Legs Crossed and Upper body supported on the ab wheel on the ground directly below your neck.
2- Maintaining tightness, allow the ab wheel to roll away from you in a slow and controlled movement until your hips are almost touching the ground.
3- To complete the movement and return to the starting position, you should use your core to stay tensed and pull the wheel back towards you and back to the starting position. Do not use your upper arms to pull the ab roller back, you must use your core
This exercise should be very difficult, and even an experienced user will not expect to get more than 15 reps. Remember it is the quality of the reps which counts, not the quantity.
For more information on how to perfect an ab roller exercise, feel free to “click here” to view a video.
How to Choose the Best Abs Roller for You
The best abs roller is the one that suits your own individual needs. Factors include:
- Fitness Level
- Design and ergonomics
There are several different types of abs rollers, the main differences include:
- Size and thickness of the rolling wheel – this will dictate how intense they are to use
- Amount of wheels – which will improve stability
- Handle Curved/Straight – this will vary the stress on your wrists
You should choose a product based on what you need it for, the intensity of the workout, and your budget.
Hopefully, you now fully realize the benefits of using an abs roller, how to use an abs roller, and which one is best for your needs. I’d strongly suggest you visit our definitive guide on “how to get lean and cut” which will supply you with the latest knowledge on how to get shredded and show off your well-earned six-pack muscles.