Standing Oblique Twists Exercise

Exercising and working the obliques is as essential as exercising other body parts. Today in this article, you will learn about standing oblique twists1, an oblique exercise variation, how to do the exercise, and the potential benefits of doing it.

Obliques are the muscles situated at the sides of your abs. It plays a crucial role in core functionality as it comes into action during every twisting and bending physical activity.

Many exercises target the obliques and the abdominal muscles, such as Russian twists, cable 3D crossovers, lumberjacks, and hanging oblique raises.

The standing oblique twist is one such variation that is the easiest one to do as it needs no equipment, and you can do the exercise anytime and anywhere.2

1. Standing Oblique Twist

Standing oblique twist is an oblique/core exercise that largely works your oblique and targets all the core muscles. While doing the standing oblique twist, your full core – the transverse abdominis and the Rectus Abdominis3 of your abs and obliques will be engaged and strengthened.

standing oblique twists
Photo by YuriArcurs on Unlimphotos

The side-to-side twisting in the exercise brings out the obliques to act.

Obliques are responsible for bending the body; the serratus comes into play when we rotate our arms, whereas the abdominal muscles stabilize the lumbar spine.4

Standing oblique twists are very helpful to those who engage in sports that involve bending and twisting of the torso, such as football, hockey, and basketball. It also revamps physical health.

The abdominal muscles are responsible for the movement of the spine and stabilizing the core. The standing oblique twist exercises strengthen your oblique muscles and increase the spine’s flexibility, which in turn increases the speed of your core and ameliorates5 your performance.

Oblique twists also improve balance and provide good posture to the body.

2. Steps To Do Standing Oblique Twists Exercise

Outlined below are the steps to do the standing oblique twist exercise.

It can be done by either using dumbbell, weight plate, or any other equipment to add resistance or even using your body weight.

How To: Standing Oblique Twists with Just Hands

1. Step 1: Get Into The Position

First, you need to get into position to do the standing oblique twists.

  • Stand by placing your feet shoulder-width apart, keeping the spine neutral, and bending the knees slightly. This position is called the athletic stance.
  • After bending the knees, stretch out the arms if you don’t have any equipment, or make fists and bring up your arms at about chin level by bending them, or you can hold a medicine ball in front of your chest with your arms bent.
  • Bring the abs into play by squeezing your shoulders and by keeping your lower back straight; push your hips back and incline your upper body forward.

2. Step 2: Start Twisting

  • Now, twist your upper body to your right side as much as possible while keeping the lower body at rest.
  • Switch sides after a second or two and quickly twist your body to the left side.
  • Remember that your lower body should not move at all. Use your obliques on each twist.

Standing OBLIQUE TWIST Exercise | How To Lose Love Handles

3. Step 3: Repeat

  • Keep twisting from your right side to your left side and vice versa until you complete the repetitions.
  • Remember to twist your torso as fast as you can and keep your abs tensed so that you can work the obliques effectually. Only then will the exercise be advantageous.
  • Also, remember to stand in an athletic stance before you start positioning.

These are the steps that you need to follow to do the standing oblique twist exercise.

3. Benefits Of Standing Oblique Twists

You might be wondering what can be the benefits of such an easy exercise. Well, every exercise has its benefits, and so do standing oblique twists.

Isn’t it great that you can acquire health benefits and much more by just getting in an athletic stance and twisting the torso from side to side? And you have the upper hand here as you can do the twists to crunch your muscles and obliques whenever you want.

Standing Oblique Twists | Core & Spine Strengthening Exercise to Improve Posture and Stability

So the main benefits of standing oblique twist exercise6 are:

  • It boosts the heart rate and also burns lots of calories.
  • It helps embellish the six-pack abs, brings out a much more detailed body midsection, and sculpts a defined V-cut down the pelvic area.
  • It elevates the functionality, strength, and endurance of the core.
  • It spirals up the senses of the body like reactivity and adaptivity.
  • It improves spine strength, thus improving the body’s balance and increasing the stability of the abdominal muscles.
  • It works the arms, shoulders, back, and hips when any equipment is involved during the exercise.

4. Conclusion

That was all about the standing oblique twist, the step-by-step exercise, and its benefits. No doubt, standing oblique twists are the easiest to perform, and you can do it whenever you want without any real guidance.

There are a variety of exercises that increase the strength of the muscles and core stability. Exercises such as Russian twists or lumberjacks are much more challenging than standing oblique twists, and they also work on the obliques and other muscles more effectively.

So if you want to go for a full oblique workout, and include Russian twists, hanging oblique raises, and others into your exercise routine, you can also hire a certified personal trainer to help you do the exercises and assist you correctly.

Before doing any oblique twist exercises, remember to do some warm-up exercises, especially those that warm up the lower body and the core muscles, because you might experience pain in the knees or lower back if you don’t warm up.


1. Are standing oblique twists effective for toning my obliques?

Yes, standing oblique twists can be effective in targeting and toning the oblique muscles. They help improve the strength and endurance of these muscles, contributing to a more defined waistline.

2. Can beginners do standing oblique twists?

Yes, beginners can do standing oblique twists, but it’s important to start with a lighter weight or no weight at all. Focus on proper form and technique to prevent strain or injury. Gradually increase the intensity as your core strength improves.

3. How many repetitions and sets should I do?

The number of repetitions and sets depends on your fitness level and goals. Generally, you can start with 2-3 sets of 12-15 repetitions on each side. As you progress, you can increase the number of sets or repetitions.

Read more from us here.

  1. Marras, W. S., K. G. Davis, and K. P. Granata. “Trunk muscle activities during asymmetric twisting motions.” Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology 8.4 (1998): 247-256. ↩︎
  2. Price, Joan. The Anytime, Anywhere Exercise Book: 300+ Quick and Easy Exercises You Can Do Whenever You Want!. iUniverse, 2008. ↩︎
  3. Akram, Javed, and Steen Henrik Matzen. “Rectus abdominis diastasis.” Journal of plastic surgery and hand surgery 48.3 (2014): 163-169. ↩︎
  4. McKenzie, Robin A., and S. May. “The lumbar spine.” Mechanical diagnosis & therapy 1 (1981): 374. ↩︎
  5. Petrasek, Jan, et al. “IL-1 receptor antagonist ameliorates inflammasome-dependent alcoholic steatohepatitis in mice.” The Journal of clinical investigation 122.10 (2012): 3476-3489. ↩︎
  6. McGill, Stuart M. “Low back exercises: evidence for improving exercise regimens.” Physical therapy 78.7 (1998): 754-765. ↩︎

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Pratyusha Biswas
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