Barbell Abdominals Side Bend

Barbell Abdominals Side Bend

In this lesson you will learn how to do barbell abdominal side bends. This exercise trains the obliques and I recommend to do the barbell side bend at the end of your abdominal workout. The same exercise can also be done with 2 dumbbells. Find more abdominal exercises at weight training and bodybuilding.


  • Stand with your feet about one shoulder width apart and place a light barbell on your shoulders (light barbell = 10 kg or 25 lbs). Keep your knees almost extended throughout the entire exercise and look straight forward. Stand upright and keep your head high (don't bend forward or back).
  • Bend to the left, inhale and keep looking straight forward. Make sure your upper body and your barbell stay in one layer as you bend to the left side. FYI, you should be able to do the barbell side bend one inch from a wall without hitting it with the barbell. Move slowly and concentrated and bend down until the right side of your abdominals is slightly stretched. Don't bend your knees and keep your hips still.
  • Move back up and exhale slowly. The strength comes from the right side of your abdominals. Don't twist your upper body, don't bend your knees, don't move your hips.
  • Then bend down to the right side, so that the left side of your abdominals is stretched and inhale again.
  • Move back to the beginning position and exhale slowly and concentrated and then start over.


  • I recommend 20 to 50 repetition and low weights for the barbell side bend.
  • You should be able to do the barbell abdominal side bend one inch from a wall. This will not be possible if you twist your upper body or lean forward or back. So make sure you keep the whole movement in a vertical layer.
  • Some people prefer to do the barbell abdominal side bend very fast (as a plyometric exercise) and bounce from left to right.