Build a Resilient Spine: Create Power for Sport Performance

Matthew Ibrahim


Medford, Massachusetts, United States

Strength Training, Mobility & Recovery



Dead Bug With Overhead Resistance

Whoever thought of giving this exercise the name “Dead Bug” was really onto something. Seriously. You look like a dead bug. I’m a huge fan of the basic Dead Bug exercise, but I love how this advanced progression places even more emphasis on increased core engagement due to the overhead resistance from the band.



Plus, now you look a bit more like a zombie laying flat on your back on the floor. Maybe we should change this exercise name to "Dead Zombie" instead? You heard it here first.


On a more serious note, the Dead Bug with overhead resistance is on my top-shelf of core exercises to teach an athlete how to avoid excessive lumbar extension, and more importantly, how to lock down their core muscles during lower extremity movement.


It’s a challenging exercise. You need to create enough core engagement and abdominal strength to avoid letting the band win.


Do This:

  1. Lay on the ground with your arms straight above your shoulders. Each hand holds either end of a resistance band. The band should provide enough tension to force you to use your abs. Maintain a flat back on the ground.
  2. Bend your knees directly above your hip joints and dorsiflex your ankles with your toes pointing up toward your hands.
  3. Keeping straight arms and constant band tension, extend your left leg. Pause. Return your left leg to the starting position.
  4. Alternate on your right side. That's 1 rep per side.
  5. Complete 12 reps per side for 1 set.
  6. Perform 3 sets per side.



Continue for Video Demonstration of the One-Arm Suitcase Farmer's Carry


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