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The bird dog is a bodyweight exercise that strengthens the core — more specifically, the abdominal muscles, lower back, butt, and thighs. Since it requires no equipment other than a mat, it can easily be integrated into almost any core strength training routine. Bauerfeind’s Sports Back Support provides support and compression for better performance during workouts.
- Find a spot with enough space to extend an arm and leg at the same time. Kneel on an exercise mat or other cushioned surface with your knees hip-width apart and hands firmly on the ground, about shoulder-width apart. Brace your abdominals.
- Point one arm out straight in front and extend the opposite leg behind you, forming a straight line from your extended hand to your extended foot. Keep your hips squared to the ground. If your low back begins to sag, raise your leg only as high as you can while keeping the back straight.
- Hold for a few seconds, then return to your hands and knees. Keep your abs engaged throughout the entire exercise and work to minimize any extra motion in your hips during the weight shift.
- Switch to the other side.
- Aim to complete five reps on each side or 10 reps total. Add additional sets of 10 exercises for a maximum of three sets of 10. As a variation, you can do a set of 10 bird dogs on one side, then switch to the other side.
Primary muscles: Core and Butt
Secondary muscles: Back and Thighs
About Lucia Schauerhammer:
Lucia guides you through some strong single exercises from the comfort of your home. The body weight exercises are designed to work your abs, legs and arms. With a background in track and field she knows which exercises are the most effective to train muscular strength, low-impact flexibility and endurance. Ready? Let’s get started!