How to perform a bridge exercise with an image showing the move. Click on the picture to see the full sized image.

The bridge exercise is a static move. There is no movement involved other than getting into and out of the correct position. The picture above is not a true animation; I am showing the move from a few different angles instead. When doing a bridge, keep the following points in mind:

  1. You should maintain a straight line between your ankles, waist, and shoulders.
  2. Your forearms will support your upper body by laying flat on the floor.
  3. Your upper arms should be perpendicular to the floor.
  4. Your weight will be resting on your elbows and toes.
  5. The exercise begins when you are in position and suck in your gut.

You will know that you have the right form when your abs begin to burn 10 to 15 seconds after you begin the bridge exercise. If you do not feel the burning sensation, then use a mirror or a friend to spot you and to let you know what you need to do to fix your form. The most common problem is that you are forming an upside-down “V”. Try pulling your waist down; you want to maintain a straight line from ankles through waist to shoulders.

To suck in your gut, pretend you are trying to touch your belly button to your spine.

The first time you do the exercise, slowly count to 30 or put a watch on the floor in front of you and maintain the position for 30 seconds. As you get better at the bridge exercise, hold the position for a minute or 90 seconds.

The bridge exercise is also known as a plank.