Why You Should Add Vertical Knee Raises To Your Workout Routine

No matter what your fitness goals are focused on, nothing has proven to be more important than a strong core. If you have strong abdominals, every other workout is more effective because it improves your strength and balance (via Mayo Clinic). It doesn't matter whether you prefer running, strength training, yoga, or something more intense, core strength is literally at the center of our work. If you have been working out for some time now, you probably have a favorite exercise to address your abs. Some prefer to mix up their workouts between crunches, planks, or leg lifts

The problem with traditional core workouts is that you may overcorrect and hurt your lower back. Some disrupt spinal alignment or lock their spines flat (via Body Building). If your form is off, it is easy to overcompensate and hurt your back, putting you out of commission for quite a long period of time. However, there may be a workout that addresses your core without putting pressure on your lower back. Vertical knee raises are an effective core workout that people can try no matter where they are in their health journey. This exercise activates your abs safely and can be done at home or at the gym.

The benefits of vertical knee raises

The vertical knee raise exercise is one of the most comprehensive core workouts that exists. As stated by Healthline, not only does this exercise promote arm and grip strength, but it also takes the pressure off your lower back and promotes more targeted focus on your abdominal muscles. In addition, Greatist explains that a vertical knee raise is the perfect workout because it can be modified in so many different ways. You can make it easier by lying down and pulling your knees toward your chest and then extending them to the ground, or make it more difficult by adding a twist when you pull your legs to your chest. 

These exercise poses are incredibly challenging, but they are easy to modify for all fitness levels. Beginners can start with fewer repetitions and second holds, and build their way to multiple repetitions and longer time durations for the hold.

How to do a vertical knee raise

Most core workouts can be divided into the exercises that address the main core, and exercises that focus mostly on the abdominals. The good news about vertical knee raises is that they do both with minimal equipment. 

According to Barbend, one way to complete the vertical knee raise is to use a pull-up bar. Grip the bar and activate your abs before pulling your knees parallel to your hips, toward your chest. The feeling of activating your abs should be similar to that of the feeling of a sit-up except you're vertical. Continue this motion six to eight times, for two to three sets. Chron explains that this exercise can be completed on multiple machines at the gym. Vertical knee raises work on parallel bars and also dip/raise machines. The benefit of these machines is that they support your back and stop you from causing injury.

No matter what you've chosen for your go-to ab workout, vertical knee raises will help to take your workout to the next level. They are a challenging, versatile, and comprehensive way to reach your core strength goals.