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Multitasking Move: Dying Bug With Dumbbells

If you're looking to maximize your time when strength training, here's a move that will target the backs of your arms, your quads, and your lower abs. If you're familiar with Pilates, this is similar to the Dying Bug exercise, but you'll need a set of dumbbells.


This move looks easy, but there's a trick to engaging your core more. To find out what it is, read more.

  • Lie on the floor on your back. Keep a set of weights by your sides. Bend your right knee and place the sole of your foot on the ground under your knee. Extend your left leg straight above you.
  • Hold a dumbbell in each hand and extend your hands above your shoulders. While in this position, actively draw your belly button in and press your lower back firmly into the floor. Maintain this position in your spine, making sure not to arch it at all.
  • As you exhale, simultaneously lower your hands toward the floor above your head, and lower your left leg toward the ground. Stop both your hands and your leg a few inches above the floor. Continue pressing the small of your back into the ground to engage your abs. If you find it difficult not to arch your back when lowering your leg all the way down, then lower only as far as you can with a straight back.
  • Inhale to slowly lift your arms and leg back to the starting position. This counts as one rep.
  • Complete a total of 10 to 12 reps on each side.
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