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If you are doing a cable pull down exercise to work your abdominal muscles, you can consider a couple of modifications to the way many athletes do this exercise - shown here.


If you’ve been following the blog, you know I’ve been emphasizing balance exercises. The modifications I’m going to suggest to the cable pull down or cable crunch were driven my desire to improve my double-poling power while Nordic skiing. However, I think these exercises are good for other endurance sports as well.


First, move the pulley mechanism so the pulling force comes from in front of you rather than above your head. The force should come from roughly a 45-degree angle. The second modification is to stand on one leg while doing the pulling maneuver. (Yes, like using a double-polling technique while skiing.) Finally, when you rise up, don’t hyperextend your spine, rather keep it in a more neutral position.


This one works best with lighter weights.

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