How To Do Ab Rollouts

Ab Rollouts (How To, Muscles Worked, Benefits)

Ab Rollouts are a very challenging core exercise that is most popularly done with an Ab Wheel. Ab Rollouts emphasize bracing the core and moving slowly through the eccentric portion of the movement.

In this guide, I’m going to teach you how to do Ab Rollouts including important coaching tips and a few alternatives in case you don’t have the proper equipment.

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How To Do Ab Rollouts

Equipment Needed


  • Barbell with Bumper Plates on each side

Muscles Worked

  • Abdominal Core Muscles (Rectus Abdominis, Obliques Externus Abominis)
  • Back (Latissimus Dorsi and Teres Major)

How To

  • Start on your knees with your hands on the Ab Wheel handles.
  • Brace the core hard and begin rolling the wheel forward.
  • Roll out until you feel you’re about to fall and then begin pulling the wheel back.
  • Repeat until all reps are completed.

Coaching Points

Don’t allow your hips to stay behind you as you begin to roll forward. Hips should stay relatively in line with the knees and shoulders, similar to a Plank.


Some potential benefits of incorporating Ab Rollouts into a workout routine include:

  • Increased core strength and stability
  • Improved posture
  • Better balance and coordination
  • Enhanced athletic performance
  • Reduced risk of injury in the lower back and other areas of the body.

How Many Reps?

Ab Rollouts are a very challenging core exercise and the reps done per set are going to reflect that. Instead of the 20 – 25 reps that are common for core exercises like crunches and sit-ups, Ab Rollouts will be much less.

I treat Ab Rollouts like most supplement strength exercises – 3 to 4 sets of 8 to 12 reps each set.

Ab Rollout Alternatives

If you need an alternative for Ab Rollouts, here are a couple of other exercises you may be able to try out.

Want more options? Here are 15 Ab Rollout alternatives that don’t require an ab wheel.

Stir The Pot

Stir The Pot

Stir the Pot is a very challenging core stabilization movement that is often underestimated by some of the athletes I train. The exercise looks simple enough: do a plank with your forearms on a stability ball and move them around in small circles.

However, the bracing, balancing and counterbalancing that your core has to do to keep your body stable while it shifts around on a stability ball will challenge even the most advanced lifter.


Female Athlete doing Planks

Planks are an extremely popular core exercise that is very similar to the fully stretched out position of an Ab Rollout.

It’s popular for a good reason. Planks are one of the most effective core exercises for learning how to brace and developing core stability. They can make a great alternative for Ab Rollouts if you’re short on equipment (or even if you’re not).

More Links and Info

If you’d like to see more core exercises, head over to the Core Section of our Exercise Library. There you’ll find dozens of core exercises, all with detailed step-by-step instructions.

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