Let me just warn you! Be afraid; be very afraid of the “dead bug!” Never heard of it? It’s an anti-extension core stability exercise. When you perform it, you look like a bug lying on its back, legs in the air, dead. This explains its strange name. But, believe me, you’re not feeling dead; if you’re doing it correctly, you’re feeling pain!
Sit-ups and crunches were once the preferred way to get tighter abs and a slimmer waistline. But, today exercises like dead bugs and planks are growing in popularity, because they call on your muscles to work together without placing any strain on your lower back. They’re easy to perform, too. You simply assume a position (the correct one) and then hold it and hold it and hold it while time seems to stand still!
My time…my bug time is 20 seconds! My plank record stands at two minutes. Yes! You read that correctly! We’re talking seconds and minutes. Does not sound impressive, right?! Here are my impressive numbers:
- 230 pounds on the leg press
- 70-90 pounds (depending on life’s circumstances) on the mid-row
- 60 pounds on the lat pull-down
- 125 pounds using the hex bar for deadlifts
Let me just say, I’m strong! And, getting smarter, too. After nearly a year of personal training, I’ve learned that when my trainer throws down a yoga mat and asks me to drop to the floor, it’s going to be tough! “Simple” moves that require you to engage your entire body, toes to fingertips, are much scarier than any weight machine or any bug, dead or alive!
Give it a go using my personal trainer, Jonathan’s notes:
“The dead bug is one of those movements where it’s up to the lifter to make it difficult. You can go through the motion without engaging the core very much, or it can be one of the most challenging anti-extension drills in your library. So make sure you’re staying tight throughout the movement, and do not let the spine hyperextend or the pelvis anteriorly rotate. A neutral spine and pelvis is preferred by a lot of professionals, but I’ve found that, for most of my clients, a flattened lumbar spine is most beneficial. Hollow holds and dead bugs can help you appreciate what it really means to own full body tension that can be used during challenging lifts like deadlifts and sqauts.”
I could add that all of it helps prepare one for moving day! First, I vote on the 6th. Then, I move on the 7th! Give me strength!