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The medicine ball twist exercise works the oblique abdominals which twist and sidebend the trunk. This can also be performed with a dumbbell held between the hands.


Teaching points

  • Sit on the floor with the knees together and slightly bent.
  • Lean back and take the feet off the floor so you are balancing on the buttocks.  
  • Hold a medicine ball in both hands in front of you with the elbows slightly bent.  
  • Twist from side to side, ensuring you are moving from your waist, not your shoulders!
  • This exercise is sometimes also known as a russian twist.  

Variations & progressions

  • To make the exercise easier for beginners, have the feet flat on the ground.
  • Remember to still lean backwards!

Muscles worked

Alternative exercises