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4 Mistakes You’re Probably Making with Ab-Wheel Rollouts


The ab wheel rollout isn’t a fancy exercise. But this simple move is a lot harder than it looks and it takes a lot of effort and practice to perfect ab rollout form.

And after a set or two, you’ll quickly learn that ab rollouts will indeed crush your abs. The more significant eccentric or lowering part of ab rollouts improves your core eccentric strength and strength in the extended position where you are weaker. There may be fancier core exercises than the ab rollout, but it’s hard to find any that are more effective at improving core strength.

Here, we’ll dive into how to do it right and common ab rollout form mistakes to watch out for so you can get the ab-crushing benefit of the ab rollout.

How To Do The Ab Rollout

  1. Get on your knees on a padded surface and grip the ab wheel with your hands under your shoulders.
  2. Push your hands through the handles to round your upper back.
  3. Then, tuck your hips under to get a neutral spine.
  4. Extend your hips to the floor as you roll out, letting your chest fall toward the floor.
  5. Keep your spine straight, keeping the arch to a minimum.
  6. Once you have reached your range of motion, squeeze the lat muscles and pull yourself back to the starting position.

What’s Needed For Good Ab Rollout Form

Anti-low back extension is the name of this game, and if you fold like a deck chair after 30 seconds of planking, work on core strength. Here are a few other components needed for good ab rollout form.

  • An awareness of a neutral spine helps because avoiding extension is critical.
  • The ability to round or extend your thoracic spine during setup is vital for keeping your spine neutral during the eccentric part.
  • Ab rollout is an overhead exercise, and if shoulder mobility is an issue, then it is best to stay with a ROM you can control.
  • Decent lat strength as you need to pull yourself back to the starting position.

4 Ab Rollout Form Mistakes to Avoid

The heart of the ab rollout exercise is that it is an anti-low back extension exercise. Any lower back extension is a no-no; all the benefits go bye-bye. So, avoid these four mistakes to get the best of this challenging exercise.

1 of 4

Watch Your Hips

Initiating this exercise by driving your hips downward is a no-no. This causes your lower back to extend, taking the tension out of your anterior core, causing you to lose tension.

Fix it: After locking in your starting position, rolling forward with your glutes squeezed should address this issue. The key with the ab rollout is staying within a range you can control. There is no need to be a hero.


2 of 4

Don’t Let Your Hips Sag

Preventing your lower back from extending is the entire point of this exercise. If you lose tension in your anterior core and glutes, you can be sure your lower back will feel it.

Fix it: You’re probably growing tired of this, but here it goes anyway- squeeze your butt. Keeping your glutes engaged and with a controlled ROM is critical to keeping your spine neutral.

3 of 4

Don’t Hurry

The ab rollout is an exercise where you take your time to set up and perform. Getting your hands underneath your shoulders, glutes engaged, and spine neutral is critical. Hurrying this exercise there and back may cause you to lose position and tension. And you don’t want that.

Fix it: What’s your hurry anyway? Ensure to set up correctly before you start and reset after every rep to get the best out of this exercise.

4 of 4

Don’t Bend Your Elbows

When you bend your elbows rolling out or back, this shifts some of the tension away from your abs and to your triceps. Plus, it makes a challenging exercise more accessible, and you don’t want that, right?
Fix it: Squeeze your triceps at the start and end of the exercise, ensuring your elbows stay locked throughout the rep.

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