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Getting Ab Wheel Rollouts Right

Stuart Moore


For riders of all types taking care of your back can be important. Learning from people such as Shirley Sahrmann and Stuart McGill has taught us that the lumber spine’s (low back) 5 vertebrae should move a little but not too much.

So, training for stability here should be a priority.

Too much movement can be a bad thing.

Anti extension strength can help you to improve some key exercises in the gym. Essentially you’re trying to prevent your low back from arching too much. Imagine your pelvis as a bowl of water. You’re trying to stop the water from spilling out of the front.

Anti extension exercises will train the muscles that lift the front of the pelvis bowl up to stop you spilling.

You would also need to imagine preventing your rib cage from flaring up.

As always a system is used. You need to qualify for rollouts.

Can you do dying bugs really well?


Can you plank well? Can you plank well with your feet on an ab dolley or firm and very round foam roller? If the answer is yes then lets get you ab wheel rolling!


If they feel easy then you’re doing them wrong. If you feel your low back working you’re doing them wrong. One of the best cues is to think about crunching the space up between the bottom of the rib cage and the top of the front of the pelvis. If your belly button gets close to the floor and your low back is arched you’ve lost correct form.

Start from the knees with a comfy pad to protect them. Use a wall as a target to aim for. Qualify for starting further away from the wall. I’d recommend getting 8 quality controlled reps before you consider moving back. If you lose your back shape you’re too far away from the wall. Simple. If you can get all the way to the floor then you’re in really good shape and its time to start playing with the more advanced versions from the feet.