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Bent Leg Raise Exercise 2023

The Bent Leg Raise is an exercise that primarily targets the abdominal muscles, specifically the lower abs. It’s an effective workout for enhancing your core strength and stability.

The bent leg raise exercise requires the flexibility and endurance of each body; some people think it is easy to cause leg fatigue, but deep learning will know its use.

Army PRT Ben Leg Raise: Four The Core

Army Bent Leg Raise Exercise
Army Bent Leg Raise Exercise

The bent leg raise is the first exercise in four the core. This exercise improves awareness of spinal control while moving the legs. 

  • This exercise improves awareness of spinal control while moving the legs. 
  • Notably, placing the hands under the back (not the pelvis) focuses the effort on the core muscles of the abdomen rather than the hip flexor muscles.

How to do the Bent Leg Raise Exercise

Here is a step-by-step breakdown of the bent leg raise, typically performed over 60 seconds:

Starting Position:

  • Begin in the supine position (lying on your back).
  • Bend your knees to a 90-degree angle, keeping your feet flat on the ground.
  • Place your hands under the small of your back, palms facing down on the ground. Ensure your hands are not positioned under your pelvis.
  • Elevate your head 2 to 4 inches off the ground.


  • Lift your feet off the ground, bending both the hips and knees to a 90-degree angle.

Maintain Position:

  • Keep your head raised 2 to 3 inches off the ground.
  • Engage and contract the abdominals as if you’re bracing for an impact on your stomach.
  • Focus on maintaining the pressure exerted on your hands by your spine. Slowly extend your legs while sustaining this pressure.
  • Hold this position for up to 60 seconds.

Resting Phase:

  • If the pressure on your hands decreases or you need a brief rest, draw your knees back toward your chest for 3 to 5 seconds.
  • Resume the exercise and continue until a full minute has passed.

Ending Position:

  • Gently return to the starting position.

Post-Exercise Reset

  • When you return to the ‘position of attention‘ between exercises, you allow for a moment to reset your posture and assess the improvement these exercises contribute to your transition to and from the ground.
  • The bent leg raise exercise improves your core strength and stability and prepares your body for more challenging physical readiness exercises.

Bent Leg Raise Tips

  • Maintain proper form by ensuring your back is flat on the ground throughout the exercise.
  • Have slower and more controlled movements as this works your muscles more.
  • Avoid using momentum to lift and lower your legs.
  • Breathe normally and don’t hold your breath during the exercise; exhale when lifting your legs and inhale as you lower them back down.
  • As your strength improves, gradually increase the intensity by extending the time you perform the exercise and adding ankle weights.
  • Consult your healthcare provider before doing this exercise if you have a history of back problems or any medical condition.

Muscles Worked by Bent Leg Raise Exercise

Rectus Abdominis

  • Bent leg raises effectively target the rectus abdominis as you lift your legs.
  • This muscle is responsible for flexing the lumbar spine.

Transverse Abdominis

  • The Transverse Abdominis is the deepest layer of abdominal muscles.
  • The transverse abdominis muscles stabilize the lower back and core area during the exercise.

Hip Flexors

  • Bent Leg Raises engage Hip Flexors, particularly the iliopsoas muscles, which connect the lower spine to the upper thigh.
  • These muscles help lift the knees towards the torso during the upward phase of the exercise.


  • The Obliques are the muscles that run along the sides of your stomach and are abdominal muscles.
  • These muscles help with the stabilization of your core throughout the exercise.

Lower Back Muscles

  • This exercise does not directly work on the lower back muscles; however, these muscles will help you with stability and support throughout the exercise.

Benefits of the Bent Leg Raise Exercise

The bent-leg raise is a simple but highly effective exercise that offers a range of benefits. 

The following are the benefits of this exercise:

Core Strength

  • The Bent Leg Raise targets the abdominal muscles and helps improve your overall core strength. 
  • A strong core is vital for overall physical fitness and supports other physical activities.

Lower Back Health

  • This exercise emphasizes maintaining contact between your lower back and the ground; this promotes awareness of your spinal alignment, which can improve posture and help alleviate lower back pain.

Hip Flexor Strength

  • This exercise engages and strengthens the hip flexors, which are essential for other activities such as running or jumping.


  • This leg raise improves the flexibility of your hip and thigh muscles, contributing to better mobility and decreasing the risk of injury in these areas.

Muscular Endurance

  • The bent leg raise position challenges your muscular endurance by targeting your abdominal muscles and hip flexors.
  • Endurance is important for other physical fitness activities, such as the Army Physical Fitness Activities.

Note: The bent leg raise workout has many benefits; use proper form to maximize these benefits and prevent injury


  • I usually modify the bent leg raise exercise to increase or decrease difficulty.
  • For example, to make the exercise more challenging, I usually straighten my legs during the raise, turning it into a Leg Raise or Hanging Leg Raise if I have access to a pull-up bar. 
  • Ensure your form is correct to prevent potential injuries and maximize effectiveness during the exercise.

Bent Leg Raises: Conclusion

The bent leg raise is an excellent exercise for strengthening these muscles; however, incorporating it into a balanced exercise routine that works on all your major muscle groups will make it more effective and impactful.

This exercise will help you:

  • Build 6-pack abs, and reduce body fat quickly.
  • Improve your appearance, help you look more toned and healthy.
  • Enhance the body’s flexibility and endurance, and help your legs become stronger.
  • Reduce foot fatigue when exercising and increase stamina.
  • It helps relax muscles and burn calories.

In conclusion, the bent leg raise is a powerful workout exercise for strengthening your core. With proper form, breathing, and individual health considerations, this exercise can help enhance your fitness routine.

George N.