The benefits of a strong core cannot be underestimated, pretty much everything you do involves your abs; walk, bend, sit, stand, reach or lift. Strong abs will improve your posture, stabilise your lifts and prevent injuries.
A good way of strengthening your core is using barbells, as an athlete can add as much or little weight to the bar as they want, depending on their sporting ability.
There are many barbell lifts that will increase your core strength, yet many of them require a vast amount of skill and technique – think snatch or overhead squat – and are harder to perform to perfection by athletes of all levels.
Try these fun and unusual barbell abs exercises to increase your core strength, no matter what level athlete you are.
1. Barbell Abs Exercises – Barbell Roll Out
This is a great way to train your core and lower back.
By rolling out on a barbell, you’ll be causing momentum in the direction away from you and then slowly having to stop. The further you extend, the more tension you place on the core. This exercise requires control to overcome the momentum and roll the barbell back.
Having the weights off to the sides instead of near your core – as you would with an ab wheel – heightens the tension needed to perform the exercise.
Grab a barbell and load both ends; smaller plates increase the difficulty as you’ll have to drop lower for a full extension. With your knees on the ground, push your hips forward, keep your arms straight and extend the barbell as far as you can without letting your lower back dip.
This is one of the best exercises to train your core. The beauty of the barbell is that you can chose how much weight to put on it; the more weight, the more momentum you’ll create when pushing out and the harder the exercise will become.