Everything You Need To Know About Russian Twists

Russian Twists

All About Russian Twists

Russian twists are a great way to increase both abdominal and back strength. It will promote growth in all your core muscles and is extremely simple to do. Russian twists are awesome because the only thing you really need to perform them is yourself and a floor. Yes, that means you can do this exercise in the comfort of your own home!

Equipment needed: Absolutely none. However, you can grab some dumbbells to really kick up the intensity. (This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through one of my links, I’ll receive a commission at no extra cost to you. Thank you so much! Read our full disclaimer here.)

picture of russian twist exercise

Targeted Muscles

Muscles that you can expect to grow from are mainly the obliques and transverse abdominals. The obliques are located on both sides of the stomach area. The transverse abdominal is what you see when you picture ‘abs’. If you want some nice abs, russian twists will get you there. Also, this will strengthen your lower back muscles. With stronger back muscles, you can expect to receive a better posture and more protection against injuries!


  1. Sit on the floor with your knees bent at a 45 degrees angle.
  2. Lean back until you can feel your abs working to hold you up. (You should be sitting on your tailbone.)
  3. Position your arms in front of you by holding them with each other directly in front of your rib cage.
  4. Tighten your abdominals by pulling your naval inwards. (Please don’t hold your breath.)
  5. Twists as far as you can to the left. Return to center. Then, twist as far as you can to the right. This completes one rep.


  • If you’re experiencing too much pressure in your lower back region, you can lean forward just a tad until you’re more comfortable.
  • The most important thing about this exercise is your posture. You want to value posture over speed.
  • Your back should remain straight at a 45 degrees angle at all times. Having a curved spine during this activity will not target your abs and will cause unnecessary strain on your lower back.
Try this: Breathe out while you’re rotating and inhale during your return to the center.

Increasing Intensity

Another truly great thing about russian twists is there are so many ways to make them more challenging as you grow. For example, keep your feet together provides you with more stability. Therefore, if you separate them to about shoulder-width apart, it’ll increase the difficulty of the exercise. You can also try these variations to create more resistance:

Lift feet off of the ground

By lifting your feet up, your core will have to work harder to support both your back and legs.

Add weight

Adding weight will cause your abdominals to have to lift and pull more during the twisting motion.

Combine the two!

All about russian twists

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