Dead Bug Exercise

Dead Bug Exercise

This page provides details about the Dead Bug Exercise. This is an exercise used by some martial artists in order to strengthen their core muscles. A stronger core allows martial artists to better withstand hits (i.e. a punch to the stomach). Moreover, a stronger core helps to improve a martial artist’s “rotational” or twisting power and this contributes to stronger kickspunches and grappling techniques.

In this core exercise, a martial arts student lies on their back. They will then move alternate arms and legs in order to engage their core muscles. It is an interesting core exercise to use when you are seeking something different from standard crunches and planks. There are a number of different variations of this exercise. We have added videos below that show straight leg and bent leg variations.

All stretches and exercises should be supervised by a trained martial arts instructor in order to prevent injuries and to ensure the proper technique is utilized. For other exercises, please visit the Core Exercises or Physical Fitness sections.

Instructional Video for Dead Bug Exercise (with Bent Legs)

Instructional Video for Dead Bug Exercise (with Straight Legs)

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