Ab Strength Test (3 LEVELS OF DIFFICULTY!)


What’s up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.COM. A couple weeks ago I gave you an ab strength
test that you could do at home, and I’ll link it right here if you haven’t seen it, that
allows you to see how strong your abs were by testing your ability to raise your leg
straight out, all the way from a top position down to a couple inches off the floor, and
then back up again without ever allowing your low back to arch.
Now I told you you could use your hands to feel where your low back placement was but
not to support your low back. And some guys tha commented on the video that
were suprised how easy it was given that they thought their abs were weak, you might have been doing just that. You might
have been digging your hands under your low back and therefore nullifying the entire integrity
of the test. But even then, even if you pass that with
flying colors, you can’t really determine your true ab strength until you do what we
do here today. And that is, we have to test your dynamic
ab strength. We have to test your spontaneous, eccentric ab strength. Why is that? Because a reactive core is a strong core.
See, in any athletic endeavor, if you’re out on the field and you want to be able to cut
in one direction, you have to have incredible ab strength to
be able to stabilize your body on a dime and cut and move in another direction. If your abs are weak, you continue to flow
in the direction you’re cutting away from, and that’s not good. And the same thing happens
even in a weight room. If you have an energy leak which we refer
to all the time meaning a weak core, the force that you generate in the Deadlift that’s supposed
to pass from your feet and your legs all the
way up through your body can be lost. So, to really develop and test reactive core strength,
or spontaneous eccentric ab strength, you need to be able to do some drills, and
I’m going to show you how you can do it here today with a bouncing med ball. And you can do 3 progressive versions of this
depending upon your current strength level. So, what you do is, you start here in a reclined
ab position. You hold this bouncing med ball which is 12 pounds. You need to bounce it
to the side and then catch it, ok. Bounce it to the side, and then catch it.
What we’re testing here when I say spontaneous eccentric is, the spontaneous eccentric contraction
of the abs and core in this direction. When I catch this, it wants to pull me down
in that direction. So, I see that the ball starts to sag after I catch it and i want
to catch it up here at head-height, then I know that I’ve got some weakness, ok,
that I’m going to need to address. And we want to test both sides, of course. But you might see that on the right side,
maybe I’d sag even a little bit more than I do on the left. And a lot can do with maybe
even your past history. I’ve had a hernia on my left side that’s been
operated on. That could lead to a difference that I see right versus left. Now, let’s say
you got that one, that’s not a problem. The next thing that you want to do is take
it and make it a little bit more dynamic. So you bounce and catch, bring it to the center,
and then back down. Now, my legs are off the ground at this point.
So, I’m down, center, and back.Down, center, back. And again, if I’m weak on this side, when
I try to get the ball over here, if I’m already falling in this direction, I’m not going to
be able to really get it up here. And it’s not going to look too pretty. So,
if I can keep it nice and clean because my abs don’t have lack of strength, then I’ll
make this look nice and sharp, like that. But if I do this, and I’m all out of sync,
it’s going to show. Again, you test left side and right side. Finally, this is where it gets fun. Now, I’m
going to be a little bit more explosive. So, what we do now is, we’re going to perform
a Russian Twist. You’re going to bounce, touch, and try to
come back here again and not lose control of the ball, and also, not really dip too
much to one side. So, you bounce, touch, and then freeze. Bounce.
Touch. And freeze. Ahh. I was a little far away. So, that’s our Russian Plyo Twist, but it
comes in perfectly here as an exercise that we can use to not just test our reactive core
strength, but help build our ab core strength. And guys, that’s what training like an athlete’s
all about. If you’re looking to get more powerfully strong abs that’s functional in any environment, and I don’t care if you don’t play sports
or not, if you just play the game of life, you’re going to have to have a strong core
because it’s involved in literally everything you do, and I’ll help you get that, head to ATHLEANX.COM.
Get our ATHLEANX Training System. Let me coach you through every one of our
ab drills and most every other workout that we do, and make sure that I’m getting you
not just strong, but strong like an athlete. If you found this video helpful guys,make
sure you leave your comments and thumb’s up below. Whatever else it is that you want to see,
leave it here in the comments. We’ll make a video on it. We’re getting you 3 a week. So I have plenty of opportunities to try to
cover what you guys want to see. Alright, I’ll see you back here soon.

87 Replies to “Ab Strength Test (3 LEVELS OF DIFFICULTY!)”

  1. These are really good, particularly the last two, which not only diagnose but help cure. (I tried a 4-lb and an 8-lb ball, which I happened to have, and neither were easy.) But I'm thinking of your recent video about the perils of tight psoas muscles — a great insight into one cause of back pain! — and I'm wondering whether sort of failing the Ab-Strength Test in this video might sometimes be a result of such excess tightness rather than from a lack of core strength per se.

  2. Ok how about this .. I play in a multiple football (flag, 2-hand touch, tackle,indoor) leagues & soccer leagues .. I want to your best 1st step speed workout I could use for all these?!

  3. Hey Jeff, can you please discuss people who do powerlifting and how it differs from AthleanX? Can you really build "all" your muscles with just 3 exercises (deadlift, squat, bench press)? (I believe not, but curious to know what you have to say)

  4. Hi All, I find myself always straining my traps around the neck. Anyone else suffered from this? Any tips? Really put off my training coz I got sick of having this problem.

  5. Great video Jeff. Thank you. Nice new hair-style.  I know you touched up on it, but I would love to see some more ways to increase your flexibility for a better formed and safer Squat.

  6. Hi JEFF, can you do a video about a correct warm up routine? I try to workout just like you recomend along all your videos with a lot of intensity and try to be consistent but I really dont have to much time to workout. Sometimes I feel I hurt myself because of not taking enough time to warm up but I have almost 30-40 minutes to do everything. Can you help me with a recomendation of a correct warm up?

  7. Jeff can you please please PLEASE make a video regarding what a split between lifting heavy and lifting light should look like I do you left heavy and light in the same workout do you less like one week and then heavy the next please shed some light on this thanks

  8. Hey Jeff! I've been doing a lot of jumping rope lately for cardio, and it works really well! Can you make a cardio workout focusing on jumping rope?

  9. I would like to suggest a video routine for the ones who usually don't have enough time during the week and can only workout in weekends. Maybe a 2 times per week workout (Friday and Sunday) ?

  10. Jeff, can you do a video on why hamstring strains, pulls and injuries are SO common in sports, especially the NBA and the NFL?  And what we can do to protect that area as we get older (I am older). Thanks

  11. Hey I hurt my lower back while in the military. Iv had a lot of trouble training it after. What are some good ways to train it up but not hurt it. I do standing lower back raises and I also use the machine to take stress off of it.

  12. Awesome. Great exercise and Great Video. A way to progress Russian Twists that I haven't used before. Thanks!

  13. Hey Jeff what can a guy do who has a bad lower back? I have the athlean x program but due to my back being jacked up for the last three days I haven't been able to workout. Today was the 11-11-11 workout and I couldn't do more than two box jumps. Any thoughts?

  14. Thanks again.I almost feel guilty for not purchasing ATHLEAN-X yet.You top off the training systems.Great work!

  15. Please submit a dynamic workout that you utilize for most of your training sessions!  Warm up and cool down seem to be the only thing missing from your training.

  16. Hey Jeff,

    I want to start off and say i have your workout system and it has been a tough ride but it really has helped me develop my body. I know you are making 3 videos a week now so if you could please make one about low back pain when your doing your abs. Its not my low back pain it is a client of mine and i just want to know what is causing that. Is it tight hip flexors or maybe just a weak core. I did the core test with her and she gets to about 60 degrees before her back starts to arch. Anyways hope you can make the video and keep up the amazing work. 

  17. Jeff can you do a video of some elite level exercises that will help increase my vertical i always wanted to dunk and im only 5'7" and can barely touch rim on a 10 foot hoop thanks.

  18. Hey @ATHLEAN-X™ !!! Please make a video about when to and not to retract your scapula during exercises. In other words, exactly which types of exercises require me to keep my scapula retracted throughout the entire range of movement, and which exercises require me to protract/extend my scapula during a certain part of the movement. I guarantee that video would be very popular, as many people struggle with poor posture and the shoulder issues that follow from bad posture. Also, random question, when I am punching, should my scapula be protracted when my fist is out at its farthest point, or retracted the entire time?

  19. Jeff I'll say this every damn day lol. you should do a video on a training split. Is it necessary to do body parts 2x a week especially weaker points. I know maybe legs and back forsure but I like to try and do tris and shoulders allot more since they're my weak points

  20. Hey I'm 15 years old I play football and ever since the offseason started if gained from 132lb to right now being 151lb I'm tripping what last year used to be my maxes (squat,bench,clean) my numbers aren't really great I'm only squatting 255 benching 185 and cleaning 195 but I'm looking for a way to gain some extra muscle all I'm really taking right now is regular whey protein.
    And i really wanna get to anywhere between the mid 160s by next season. Would really appreciate if you'd help

  21. Jeff, I watched, once more, an old video regarding the essential equipment for a home gym. Given that many pay some money for a gym subscription, which is the minimum equipment and facilities they should look for?  Believe me I know there is no excuse for not training. Yet humor me, preferably with a new video.

  22. Hey Jeff, can you do a video on portion size?  I know you say to eat smart and eat til you're full, but sometimes it's hard to regulate it in the moment.  Can you give me an idea of how much I need to/should be eating?  I'm a smaller guy (not skinny, but 116ish pounds), and sometimes I feel like I'm eating too much by having a "full size" portion.

  23. Hi Jeff. You've mentioned in past videos about rep ranges. I realize that working to failure in different rep ranges has different benefits. I go 1-5 for basic strength and 6-8 with explosive movements to cover my power training and for mass building I aim to fail at 8(ish) reps, take a rest pause for just a few seconds and try to get another 4 reps out plus drop sets or pre/post fatigue sets.  Also it's sort of obvious that working to failure in the 40-50 range improves muscular endurance.  But what about the others.  Why should I train at, say, 12-15 or 15-18 or 18-25 or whatever.  What performance benefits do these rep ranges give us. Could you make a video on that please.  Cheers 🙂

  24. Jeff, I get ridiculously painful forearm pain when I curl, or lift heavier weights. I keep my wrists straight while I do so, but after I release my grip, it feels like my forearms are almost locked and there's a lasting pain that dissipates over a couple seconds. How can I alleviate this ?

  25. Hey Jeff, could you make a video that covers when to stretch, some good stretches to do, and what to avoid etc? Thanks a lot!

  26. My right pec is falling behind my left. I'm going to try exercises like single arm dumbbell incline to address this. Are there any other exercises you'd recommend to fix muscles imbalances?  

  27. THANK you for talking about doing ab training without letting the back arch. I teach this all the time to my clients but no one ever talks about it 🙂

  28. I used something similair to this while I played as goalkeeper for fun =) it was however more about been flat on the floor, catch the ball as farr out as possible and not letting your hands or ball touch the ground (that means a med ball at 22 pounds may smack your face sometimes..not so funny)

  29. Hey Jeff, i saw a video on another youtube channel (won't name it) that said that russian twist is bad for your spine. Especially the weighted one. Can you comment on the subject in upcoming video or comment under my question, please? How about the canoes? Guys, please thumb up, so that Jeff sees it.

  30. No it was very easy to do that leg raise after 5 sec pause at bottum, not very easy i say i got the pump yes i did have that, but it wasnt so difficult i have nvr done abs in my life may be couple of times for tym pass i have done plank 7 times in my whole life (m just 19) and nvr done any exercise for abs still m able toh do 4 min plank with 1 min 10 kg plate on my back(last min)but still me abs are not that visible

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