Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
Sign in to follow this  
Coach Sommer

L-sit Lifts

Recommended Posts

Coach Sommer

pKMnv7eEsnQ

A common theme song in fitness circles today is that specific conditioning for building core strength is both unnecessary and over-rated. This may indeed be the case in regards to less comprehensive pursuits; but for Gymnastic Strength Training™, specific work is not only necessary, but is so essential that it must be a primary focus.

L-sit lifts are an excellent example of a gymnastics core conditioning element that is quite effective and comprehensive in nature. They are possessed of an active flexibility element, contain a static strength element and promote reasonable support strength throughout the shoulder girdle and arms while simultaneously placing a significant workload on the abs and hip flexors. That is a lot of bang for the buck.

An L-sit lift, although demanding, is technically one of the simplest gymnastics core strength elements to perform. Begin from a seated pike on the floor. Make sure the area behind you is clear of obstructions in case you fall backward. Place your hands on the floor so that they are just in front of the hips. As with planche work, the hand position used is completely optional. The hands may be flat, or on the first knuckle or up on the fingertips. The hands may be turned forward, sideward or backward. If despite experimenting with a variety of positions, you find that your wrists are still excessively uncomfortable, I recommend that you perform the L-sit lifts on parallets or pushup bars.

Once you have found a hand position that you are comfortable with, press yourself up into an L-sit. Pause in the L-sit and then attempt to lift your legs as high as possible. Do not allow the arms to bend, but focus on keeping the elbows completely extended. Also note, that leaning back too far back will preclude you from attaining any reasonable amount of lift. Rather focus on remaining upright and pressing down strongly.

If you are not used to this kind of straight arm exertion, you may find yourself the proud owner of a set of very engaging triceps cramps. These are quite effective at gaining your full attention :shock:! If cramps occur, immediately come out of the L-sit lift, place the hand of the cramping arm behind your head and grasp that hand's elbow with your other hand. Pulling down strongly on that elbow and then holding that position for 5-10 seconds is usually quite effective in helping to relieve the cramping.

Eventually plan on lifting your legs to vertical, however for now a lift of only a few inches may be all that is possible. Return once more to the L-sit position and then continue onward for the desired number of repetitions.

L-sit%20lifts.jpg

Initially many people will find that the pike version of L-sit lifts is too demanding. This may be due to a lack of active flexibility, support strength or the obvious culprit of deficient core strength. The following modifications will help to gradually build the strength and flexibility needed to perform this outstanding core strength element.

Progression

1) Tight Tuck - Perform the L-sit lift as described above, but with the legs pulled tightly into a tuck position.

2) Relaxed Tuck - Now allow the legs to extend out somewhat from the tight tuck position that you used initially.

3) Legs Extended Halfway - Perform L-sit lifts with the legs approximately half way straight.

4) Legs Slightly Straddled - The legs will now be completely straight, but slightly straddled to help to increase the available leverage when performing this element.

5) Pike - The legs will now be completely straight and together at all times.

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Blairbob

Nice.

Do you have them ever go to manna in this movement or do you train that different as per your manna article. Perhaps that is only for those gymnasts that have that flexibility strength.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nic Scheelings

Hi

With these i can only get about half the range of motion with my legs piked and together is the idea just to keep practicing until i can get it to a full v?

What sort of sets and rep ranges do u normally advocate in order to get to the full range?

Thanks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JaredLLL

yeah, im kind of curious as to what constitutes a full ROM for the progressions.

would it be easiest to just follow the hips to determine the motion?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Rampage

This may be a self-answered question and obvious, but because I can't hold an L-sit for more than approx. 12 seconds yet, I just wanted to ask: do you breathe in an L-sit lift, when you hold it for like e.g. 30+ seconds? Or do you hold your breath? Because I always hold my breath and can't seem to breathe lol haha.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Razz

During every exercise you breathe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Blairbob

Yes, eventually you need to learn how to relax enough to breathe for longer duration holds.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Emmanuel Debra
Yes, eventually you need to learn how to relax enough to breathe for longer duration holds.

Any way to recommend how to relax and perform breathing in a cycle that will assist in a longer duration hold?

Thanks,

Katawia

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Blairbob

it comes in time. just remember to breathe.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tyciol

I can't comfortably bend my fingers back that far yet, so I use planche pushup handles so that I have enough clearance to get my feet off the ground.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Razz

Did you try to change your hand position?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Gerald Mangona

Ok...this showed up a little while back in my WOD rotation. I've tried even the most basic of progressions. I can get into an L-sit tuck just fine -- even an L-sit full lay, just below parallel for a 7s hold. But I the only way I can lift my legs is by piking (bending) my hips. I can't get my upper torso to move in front of my arms. Am I doing them right? Or can am I too weak to do this exercise?

If I am too weak...how do I scale?

Thanks - JM

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Blairbob

Umm, an L-sit involves piking in the hips.

If you can only do an L-sit for 7s, L-sit lift is beyond you for now.

Good drills before this or L-sit/hang and lift as high as possible returning to the L.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yaad Mohammad

I have to work on my flexibility if I'd like to do this...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Gerald Mangona

Eventually plan on lifting your legs to vertical, however for now a lift of only a few inches may be all that is possible. Return once more to the L-sit position and then continue onward for the desired number of repetitions.

Sorry I wasn't clear. I can hold the l-sit part fine with my legs piked (though not for very long, as you say). It's what you do after that which I'm confused by...the part where you work toward going into manna. I just can't do it at all. But it sounds like for right now, I should just be doing dead hangs into L-Hangs and back.

How do you get to the part Coach talks about above...where your legs are starting to lift? Is that a core strength issue or an arms/shoulder strength issue?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Blairbob

Mostly core strength, there is only a slight lean back on the triceps in the L-sit lifts. It's mostly active pike flexibility and strong abs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Gym777

Would this exercise be equally effective when done on parallel bars?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Erik Sjolin

Is there a way to make these harder once we've developed them? The ways I can think of are; on rings, stay in V-sit longer, try and continue it to manna (that'll be a while :lol: ), or add weights to the ankles.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Coach Sommer

Continuing to press upward until you reach manna should increase the intensity nicely. 8)

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Erik Sjolin

That'll be fun to work on. :) We'll see where I am with that in a few years. :lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×

Important Information

Please review our Privacy Policy at Privacy Policy before using the forums.