The TRX is one of the best pieces of equipment out there to strengthen your core. It’s challenging because you only have two points of contact with the floor, your arms, so you need to use your core muscles to stabilise your body in the loops. Therefore, when performing the exercises, you need to engage muscles beyond the specific ones you are targeting. Plus, just about every exercise requires that you keep a perfect plank position, which engages your glutes, quads and hamstrings as well.
Here are my favourite TRX exercises for a strong core:
This is the first exercise you need to master before you can move to the other exercises. Adjust the straps to mid-calf length, get your feet in the straps and get in a supine position, toes facing down. You can perform it on your forearms (easier) or your hands (harder). Make sure your elbows or wrists are directly under your shoulders, respectively. Engage your abs to keep your hips in line with your head and toes. Your body needs to remain in a straight line throughout. Hold the plank for 30’’ or more.
2. TRX Pike
Start from a plank position, toes facing down. Make sure your wrists are directly under your shoulders and that your body is in a straight line. Exhale and lift your hips up towards the ceiling by drawing your legs towards your chest until you look like and upside-down V. Slowly lower down and repeat. The bigger the pike, the more intensive the exercise.
3. TRX Runners (Mountain climbers)
Start from a plank position by keeping your body in a straight line. Keep your core steady and bring your right leg towards your chest, whilst keeping the other straight. Alternate. Repeat for as many times as you can keep your body steady. Don’t let your lower back arch.
4. TRX Knee tuck
Start from a plank position, keep your body straight and your hands below your shoulders. Keep your core steady, exhale and bring both legs towards your chest. Inhale and return to the starting position. Repeat for as many times as you can keep good posture, without letting your hips sag.
5. Side plank
This exercise targets your oblique muscles and it’s a real challenge because your feet aren’t on the floor anymore! They are in the straps and every tiny thing you change in your core engagement makes the straps move! You can perform it either on your forearm (easier) or on your hand (harder). Make sure your elbow or hand is directly under your shoulder. The heel of the front foot can touch the front of the back foot for added stability. Keep your bottom hip lifted so your body is in a straight line and hold for as many seconds as you can. Switch sides.
6. Oblique crunches
Place your feet in the loops and start in a plank position, shoulders directly over your hands. Exhale, bend both knees at the same time and bring them towards your left elbow. Inhale and extend them back to plank position before bringing them to your right elbow. Repeat.
7. TRX Body Saw
This is a variation of the plank and the goal is to hold a perfect straight line with your body whilst rocking backwards and forward, changing your centre of gravity. Start from a forearm plank position, elbows directly underneath your shoulders, engage your core and rock forward slightly until your shoulders are slightly in front of your elbows. Then slide backwards slightly until your shoulders are slightly behind your elbows. This is one rep. Repeat for as many as you can do with good posture and don’t forget to breathe!
Hope you enjoy trying out these exercises! If you do try them, let me know how it went!