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Legs raise progression

Leg raise is one of the best exercise for your core. It will help you develop not just a strong core, but functional too. Leg raise work the whole abdominals or "Abs" muscle and the obliques. Along with a appropriate diet program, you will get your sick-pack.

Like other exercise in the series, you start by choosing one of the following variations as a starting point and perform 3 sets of between 4 and 8 repetitions with periods of between 1 and 2 min of rest between each set. When you can do 3 sets of 8, move on to the next exercise in the progression.

1. Knee tuck

Knee tuck

Sit on the edge of a chair or bench. Lean back a little, grip the edge of the seat with your hands, and straighten your legs. Your feet should be together with the heels raised a few inches from the floor.Then smoothly bring the knees up and in until they are approximately six to ten inches from your chest. Exhale as you draw the knees in. By the time the motion is complete, you should have exhaled fully and your abs should be tightly contracted.

Pause for a count of one before reversing the motion and finishing again in the start position. Inhale as you extend. Your feet should follow a straight line backwards and forwards, and should not touch the floor until the set is completed. Keep the stomach tucked in at all times.

2. Flat knee raises.

Lying flat on the floor, bring your knees up whilst keeping your legs bent at a 90 degree angle.
At the top position, so that your thighs are perpendicular to the floor, and your calves are parallel to the floor, keeping your stomach muscles tight. Make sure to keep breathing throughout the exercise.
Flat knee raise

3. Flat bent leg raises.

Lying on the floor, bring your legs vertical with a slight bend in them, then return without touching the floor.
Flat bent leg raise

4. Flat straight leg raises.

Lying on the floor, bring your legs vertical, keeping them straight at all times, then return without touching the floor.
Flat straight leg raise

5. Hanging knee raises

Jump up and grab an overhead bar. Your hands should be about shoulder width apart. Your body should be in a straight line, and you must keep your shoulders "tight".  Bring your knees up smoothly until they are level with your pelvis and your knees are at a right angle. Your thighs will be parallel with the floor. Exhale during this motion, keeping your stomach pulled in. Pause for a moment, then reverse the motion until your body is fully extended, inhaling as you go. Repeat.
Hanging knee raise

6. Hanging bent leg raises

Similar to knee raises but performed with your legs at a 45 degree angle.
Hanging bent leg raise

7. Hanging straight leg raise

Similar to above step but keep your legs as straight as possible.
Hanging straight leg raise

8. Hanging bent leg V-raises.

Keeping a 45 degree bend in your legs throughout the motion, raise them till your feet are level with your head or higher. Keep your arms straight throughout the exercise.
Hanging bent leg V-raise

9. Hanging straight leg V-raises (a.k.a. toes to bar).

Hanging from a pull up bar, raise your legs straight, till they touch the bar, then lower under control.
Hanging straight leg V-raise

10. Hanging V-raise windshield wipers.

Raise your legs straight untill your toes touch the bar, then twist to one side and the other, before lowering your legs down again. That's one rep.
Windshield wipers

11. One arm hanging leg raises.

At first, use the other arm for balance, to prevent your body from rotating, then free it.
Congratulation!! You just did one of the hardest abs exercises.
One arm hanging leg raise

Going beyond

After one arm hanging leg raise, i'm sure that you have a super strong abs, than almost guy in gyms.
But if you still want to go further, here are some exercises to test your core.

Dragon flag
In my opinion, this is the hardest abs exercise ever.
Created by legendary Bruce Lee. This is also one of impressive training scene in movies  I've seen.
Bruce Lee legendary Dragon flag
You can find tutorial for Dragon flag here.

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