Knee tuck exercises, when properly performed, are outstanding nose-to-toes core exercises. This week, three excellent knee tuck exercises will be featured. One knee tuck exercise performed from the stability ball, one performed from an elevated step platform with Gliding Discs and one performed from the TRX Suspension System. The movement pattern of a knee tuck exercise is quite challenging and is best attempted when you have established solid, strong and stable nose-to-toes core musculature. Mastering full planks with variations such as mountain climbers and spiderman crawls are good precursors to the knee tuck exercises. Once mastered, consider adding these three knee tuck exercises to your exercise program and enjoy the results! As always, prior to beginning any exercise program, please consult your physician.
*Choose one of these three exercises and perform 1-2 sets of 8-12 repetitions, on two-three non-consecutive days per week. It is suggested that you do not attempt to perform all three in one session. Therefore, perform one of these knee tuck variations during one week, then the other two during subsequent weeks. Throughout each exercise, head/neck in neutral, shoulders/hips/knees/toes facing the same direction, navel to spine and pelvic floor engaged.
Knee Tuck Exercise #1 – stability ball – place the stability ball on the floor, kneel in front of it and roll into a prone full plank position on the ball. Either the thighs (least intense) or shins (more intense) should be resting on the top of the ball, wrists under shoulders. Hinging from the hip joint, draw the knees toward the chest, pointing the tailbone to the ceiling and the pubic bone toward the breast bone. Then, return to the plank position and repeat. Avoid rolling back beyond the plank position, stabilize into the plank and return to the plank each time and avoid dropping the knees toward the floor. *Trains the nose to toes core.
Knee Tuck Exercise #2 – step platform and gliding discs – build up a 4-inch step platform to a 12-inch platform (i.e. four risers under each end). Place two gliding discs on the floor in front of the step and place your hands on the top of the step approximately shoulder distance apart with the balls of the feet on top of the discs. Position the body into a full plank. Tuck the knees to the chest gliding the feet in on the discs and then return to a full plank position. Keep the spine in neutral never permitting the lumbar spine to hyper-extend. Think of this as a moving plank, knees tucking then plank. *Trains the nose to toes core.
Knee Tuck Exercise #3 – TRX Suspension System – with the TRX properly anchored and suspended according to the manufacturer’s directions, place the height of the straps on the TRX to approximately 12-16 inches from the ground. Kneel down, facing away from the anchor point and place the top of the feet into the straps, walk out into a prone position until your hands are under the shoulders creating a full plank position. Tuck the knees under the hips (i.e. 90 degrees of hip flexion) and then press back out into the plank position. Again, think of this as a moving plank with the “knee-tuck” movement pattern the only movement. *Trains the nose to toes core.