Knee Hug

Knee Hugs

The knee hugs core exercise, where your back comes off the floor, is a great way to engage your abdominal muscles. Here are step-by-step instructions for performing this exercise:

Video Instructions on How to Do Knee Hugs

Muscles Targeted:

  • Rectus abdominis (the “six-pack” muscles)
  • Hip flexors

Equipment Needed:

  • Exercise mat (optional)


  1. Starting Position:
    • Lie down on your back on an exercise mat or a comfortable surface.
    • Extend your legs straight out and keep them together.
    • Place your arms straight alongside your body, palms facing down.
  2. Engage Core:
    • Activate your core muscles by drawing your navel toward your spine. This helps stabilize your spine and protect your lower back.
  3. Lift Legs:
    • Lift both legs off the ground simultaneously. Keep them straight as you raise them toward the ceiling.
    • Aim to lift your legs until they are perpendicular to the floor. If you’re a beginner, you may not be able to lift them as high, and that’s okay.
  4. Bend Knees:
    • As you lift your legs, begin to bend your knees toward your chest. Simultaneously, lift your lower back off the floor.
    • Your hips will naturally come off the ground as you bring your knees toward your chest.
  5. Hug Knees:
    • Once your knees are close to your chest, reach your arms around your legs and hug your knees with your hands. This is the “knee hug” position.
  6. Hold and Contract:
    • Hold the knee hug position for a moment, squeezing your abdominal muscles. Focus on the contraction in your abs.
  7. Return to Starting Position:
    • Slowly lower your legs back down toward the floor, straightening them as you descend.
    • Lower your lower back to the floor, and return to the starting position with your legs hovering just above the ground.
  8. Repeat:
    • Perform the knee hug core exercise for the desired number of repetitions. Start with a manageable number and gradually increase as your strength improves.


  • Keep the movement slow and controlled to maximize muscle engagement.
  • If you experience any strain in your lower back, reduce the range of motion or avoid lowering your legs too close to the ground.
  • Focus on the quality of the movement rather than the quantity of repetitions.

As with any exercise program, it’s advisable to consult with a fitness professional or healthcare provider, especially if you have any pre-existing conditions or concerns about your fitness level.