How to Do Leaning Twists

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The leaning twist develops the core.

In 1988, author John Little published a book entitled "The Art of Expressing the Human Body," based on martial arts expert Bruce Lee's personal training logs. One topic Little discusses in his book is the importance Lee placed on developing and maintaining a strong core. Lee apparently relied heavily on five abdominal exercises that he believed were essential for this purpose, and among those five exercises was the "leaning twist." Lee felt it necessary to perform a minimum of 50 repetitions.

Things You'll Need

  • Pole or broom handle
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    • 1

      Stand with your feet parallel and shoulder-width apart. Direct your toes forward and keep your legs straight.

    • 2

      Grasp a pole or broom handle in both hands and position it behind your neck, allowing it to rest on your shoulders. Engage your abdominal muscles in preparation for the forward lean.

    • 3

      Bend forward at your waist as much as is comfortable. Maintain a straight back and keep your head aligned with your torso. Twist your body and look to the right, attempting to touch the left end of the pole to your right foot. The pole or broom handle should lie perpendicular to the floor and ceiling.

    • 4

      Reverse the twist and return to a standing position with your head and neck lifted and your back long. Return your focus to the front.

    • 5

      Bend forward at your waist and repeat the twist to the left, aiming to touch the right end of the pole or handle to your left foot. Return to an upright position.

Tips & Warnings

  • Do not allow any movement in the hips as you twist.

  • Completing 10 to 15 repetitions may be sufficient if you are a novice. Consider increasing the number of repetitions as your fitness level increases.

  • If you prefer, you may sit in a chair while performing the leaning twist. Although you will not achieve a full range of motion, your abdominals will still benefit.

  • You may need to wait a day or two between workouts to give your core muscles time to recover.

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  • Photo Credit IT Stock/Polka Dot/Getty Images

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