Medically reviewed by Micky Lal, MA, CSCS,RYT — By Katey Davidson, MScFN, RD, CPT — Updated on Dec 9, 2021

The anh kiệt exercise is an effective và efficient exercise for people of all fitness levels. It targets your lower back muscles, glutes, hamstrings, và abs.

What’s more, it complements other bộ vi xử lý core exercises — such as leg raises & situps — that mostly focus on the abdominal muscles in the front of your body.

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That said, you may wonder how to vì it properly and safely to lớn ensure you’re targeting the right muscles without hurting yourself.

This article review the anh hào exercise, its benefits, how to bởi vì it, & some common mistakes.

Though you may not become a superhero by doing this exercise, you’ll definitely have a super strong vi xử lý core after adding it to your fitness routine.

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How to bởi vì the hero exercise
The siêu nhân is a move that you can easily try today. Here’s how:

Lie on the floor in a prone (facedown) position, with your legs straight và your arms extended in front of you.Keeping your head in a neutral position (avoid looking up), slowly lift your arms & legs around 6 inches (15.3 cm) off the floor, or until you feel your lower back muscles contracting. Engage your glutes, your core, và the muscles between your shoulder blades simultaneously.Aim to lift your belly button slightly off the floor to lớn contract your abs. A good way khổng lồ picture this is to lớn imagine you’re anh hào flying in the air.Hold this position for 2–3 seconds. Be sure you’re breathing the entire time.Lower your arms, legs, và belly back khổng lồ the floor. Repeat this exercise for 2–3 sets of 8–12 reps.

It’s important lớn lift only as far as your body feels comfortable. Though you may be able lớn lift just a few inches off the floor, you’ll still get a great workout. If you find this move too difficult, try lifting only your arms off the floor.

What’s more, avoid lifting your head or hyperextending your neck, which can lead lớn pain or discomfort.


Correctly performing the anh dũng exercise will ensure you’re targeting the right muscles. To prevent injury, be sure to lớn pay attention lớn how your toàn thân feels.

Benefits of the superman exercise

The anh dũng exercise provides many benefits, including (1, 2, 3):

Spinal support. This move strengthens the erector spinae muscles, which provide support to your spine.Injury prevention. A strong core is important for reducing strain on your lower back, which can lead lớn pain or injury over time.Stronger legs và buttocks. In addition lớn targeting your core, the siêu anh hùng targets your glutes & hamstrings.Accessibility. This exercise requires no equipment, only your body toàn thân and the floor. This makes it a budget-friendly exercise for everyone.

The dũng sĩ exercise is convenient, accessible, affordable, và easy khổng lồ perform for all exercise levels. That’s why it can be a great move to add to your routine.


The siêu nhân exercise strengthens the erector spinae muscles và other surrounding muscles to support your spine, promote good posture, và reduce risk of injury. What’s more, it uses no equipment and is easy lớn do.

Muscles worked in the anh kiệt exercise

Despite popular belief, your bộ vi xử lý core is more than just your abs. It includes the front abdominal muscles (rectus abdominis, transverse abdominis, internal và external obliques), lower và upper back muscles, and other surrounding muscles (4, 5).

In particular, the anh hào exercise targets mostly the erector spinae muscles of your lower back. The erector spinae muscles include the spinalis, longissimus, và iliocostalis, which play a key role in back extension (6, 7).

This exercise also targets the glutes, hamstrings, upper back and shoulders, & abdominal muscles.

Collectively, this move supports a stronger core. Và that’s important for activities of daily living (like bending, squatting, & lifting), athletic performance, good posture, and the prevention of lower back injury (1).

Fortunately, the anh dũng is easy & safe for people of all fitness levels khổng lồ perform. One note of caution: People with chronic back injuries should avoid this move or speak with a healthcare professional first.


The siêu anh hùng exercise targets the lower and upper back, shoulders, glutes, hamstrings, and abdominal muscles.

3. Standing superman

Start in standing position, with your feet hip-width apart.Slightly bend your knees and reach forward with your left arm.Place most of your weight on your left leg & slowly lift your right leg off the floor. Ideally, try to lift it until it is parallel with the floor.Hold this position for a count of 5 seconds. Concentrate your eyes on the floor khổng lồ help keep you balanced.Return lớn standing position and switch sides. Vì 8–12 reps on each side.

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Perform this move only if you have good balance. It’s also best to lớn try this move with a spotter or near a stable structure khổng lồ prevent falls.

4. Hero with elbows bent

If you notice a lot of strain in your neck và shoulders or lower back when attempting the tráng sĩ exercise, try this variation instead:

Start lying facedown on the floor, with your legs hip-distance apart.Bend your elbows và place your hands, palms down, underneath your forehead. Inhale và draw your belly button khổng lồ your spine.Exhale to lift only your upper body toàn thân off the floor, keeping your legs down & the backs of your hands glued to lớn your forehead. Gaze out under your thumbs. Gently squeeze your shoulder blades together và slide them down as if sliding them into the back pockets of your pants.Inhale as you lower down.

Alternative exercises to lớn the siêu nhân will give you similar benefits but may be more accessible if you feel pain in your neck, shoulders, or lower back.

Though the tráng sĩ is safe for most people, avoid these common mistakes to effectively target your muscles and prevent injury:

Moving too quickly. This move is intended to be slow and deliberate. Be sure to lớn slowly lift your limbs and hold the position for at least 2–3 seconds before lowering.Looking up. This puts excess strain on your neck & upper back. Instead, keep your neck in a neutral position & your chin slightly tucked.Pointing your toes. Though tempting, pointing your toes (plantar flexion) overworks your legs rather than your back. Instead, keep your toes in neutral position or just slightly pointed.Bending your knees. Keep your legs straight & focus on engaging your back, core, and glutes.Overextending your arms và legs. Extending your arms and legs too much can put excess strain on your lower back. Keep a slight bend in your elbows và knees as you lift and lower your arms và legs.Exercising on a hard surface. It’s best lớn exercise on a yoga mat or soft surface, such as carpet, to lớn avoid bruising or hurting your hips.Summary

Avoiding common mistakes will not only give you a better workout when performing the hero exercise but also help protect you from injury.

While the anh hào is generally safe for most people, it may not be suitable for those with chronic lower back pain or recent injury khổng lồ the lower or upper back, abdomen, hamstrings, or glutes.

Furthermore, those who are pregnant shouldn’t perform the exercise after the second & third trimester because it puts excess pressure on the belly. In the first trimester, speak with a healthcare professional before attempting this move or any new exercise.

People who experience shoulder pain and have trouble reaching overhead may have pain when doing the traditional siêu nhân exercise. A modified version (like dũng sĩ with elbows bent) may be a better option.

The siêu anh hùng exercise is safe and effective for most people, as long as it’s performed correctly.


Though the siêu nhân is safe for most people, those who have chronic back injuries, are currently healing from an injury, or are pregnant should avoid this exercise or consult a healthcare professional before trying it.

This move targets your lower back (erector spinae muscles), abs, glutes, hamstrings, & upper back.

Collectively, this helps provide spinal support, reduces the risk of back injury, và helps you carry out regular activities of daily living, such as bending and lifting.

While the siêu nhân is safe for most people, it’s important to lớn consult a healthcare professional before trying this exercise if you have a history of back issues, are injured, or are pregnant.

Furthermore, be sure khổng lồ pay attention as you execute the siêu nhân exercise lớn ensure you’re doing it safely and correctly.

If you’re looking to strengthen your core, give the tráng sĩ a try — it’ll counteract the computer slump và leave you feeling strong and mighty.