I Love to Hate You: 5 Foolproof TRX Ab Exercises

I Love to Hate You: 5 Foolproof TRX Ab Exercises

Reading I Love to Hate You: 5 Foolproof TRX Ab Exercises 5 minutes

[Brought to you by Kari Woodall - TRX Master Instructor and former US National Team Swimmer.]

As a former professional swimmer, I may not wear a swimsuit daily anymore, but I still train like I do.  So I maintain a healthy love-hate relationship with some stellar TRX core exercises to keep my abs swimsuit ready.  Check out this unexpected array of 5 money moves that will crush your core and show off that svelte 6 pack in no time.  The more you hate these core exercises, the more love they give. Say hello to your new besties…

TRX Standing Oblique Roll-out:  You are my friend...for now.

I can make you easier by stepping away from the anchor and harder by stepping back, so I like you for that.  Our friendship diminishes as I roll-out and try to stabilize my body on the straps, forcing me to engage my deep stabilizers and lighting up my core in 360 degrees. Don’t push your luck with me.

Cues: Stand Facing Away (SFA), Standing Plank position, toes point towards either 10:00 or 2:00, shoulders and head face 12:00. Maintain tight body position and roll out with control, keeping body aligned and shoulders away from ears. Press on handles and squeeze armpits to return.

Roll Out


TRX Pike Up: You’re a wolf in disguise.

Sure, you’re a hinging exercise for hip mobility and also challenge shoulder stability, but stop disguising yourself as down-dog, faker.  Abs, abs, abs. Burn, burn, burn. And just when I think things can’t get harder, gravity reminds me of its existence as I try to slowly lower my hips back to plank.  You’re not a dog. Reveal yourself.

Cues: Ground Facing Away (GFA), In Hands or Forearms Plank, pike the hips up and slowly return to plank maintaining neutral spine.

TRX Torso Rotation: Who said we were ever friends?  

Targeting my hips, obliques, shoulders and back is cool, but the sneak attack of pain as I come out of rotation is not.  Who needs eccentric control anyway? The more I decelerate, the more my torso chisels. Totally just unfriended you.

Cues: Single Handle Mode (SHM), find end range of motion (ROM) with front arm straight across chest, one shoulder and hip rotated towards anchor, spine stays neutral and hips and shoulders rotate simultaneously. Set shoulders and shoulder blades down, squeeze glutes and lats to slowly lower out of rotation (like a cylinder) back to facing anchor.

TRX Side Plank with Hip Drop: You’re banned from the TRX Club.

You are Pilates on steroids and you know it.  Who needs frontal plane exercises anyway? My lateral chain is pretty strong, yet I weep the next day from armpit to hip.  You’re dead to me.

Cues: Ground Sideways (GSW), In a Side Plank, lower and lift hips while stabilizing through bottom shoulder, keeping hips and shoulders vertically stacked and bottom shoulder away from ear.

Rip Stack: I despise you.

Dear angry yellow stick: My butt is on fire and my abs and obliques just joined the party. I sooooooo own you, isooooo-metric hold. I’ll use perfect posture to protect my spine and diaphragmatic breathing to increase core stability.  I can resist rotation back to the anchor and hold that position for as long as you can, you evil little bar with leash. I love to hate you. You complete me, bae.

Cues: Stand Sideways (SSW), Hold Rip at base with left hand (near safety strap in Zone 1) and part way up in yellow or just above yellow with right hand (Zone 3 or 4 to make it easier).  Place left hand on left hip and point Rip directly out in front of left hip, resisting the cord pulling torso and Rip towards anchor. Stand with good posture, aligning ears, shoulders, hips, knees and ankles vertically while keeping knees soft so muscles are active and knees aren’t locked.


About The Author | Kari Wodall 

As a former US National Team Swimmer and Division I Collegiate Swimming Coach, Kari Woodall has trained and competed at the highest levels and coached others to do the same.  She is a TRX Master Instructor, Certified Level II Firefighter, and fitness entrepreneur in Madison, WI. She incorporates her honed coaching techniques, class programming and leadership skills into her business model where she uses her in-depth experience to create unique and challenging custom programs and boot camps specifically geared towards first responders, swimmers, and triathletes.



To learn how to coach more workouts like this, check out TRX Education.