Standing Oblique Twist Benefits and Variations

The Standing oblique twist is one of the best exercises to target your core muscles. It is one of the few exercises that specifically target the side muscles of your abs also known as “obliques”.

The Standing oblique twist movement engages and strengthens your oblique muscles, these muscles are responsible for spine movements and stabilizing the core.

Like any other body part, to get the best results, the oblique must be worked out regularly whilst also providing adequate rest to aid recovery.

Benefits of Oblique Twists

The Oblique twist is a traditional exercise that is found in most core workout routines, and it has many benefits.

  • Standing Oblique twists will enhance your performance, which in turn increases your core’s speed and improve your performance when participating in sports such as football, netball, golf etc.
  • Improve physical health and make carrying out daily activities such as bending, lifting, twisting etc. easier.
  • Improved balance and stability in the abdominal, trims and spine
  • The standing oblique twist strengthening of the obliques, core, and spine and help to improve balance and posture.
  • You don’t need a lot of space to move. Try the below exercises at home, in your hotel room, or at the gym — no lying on any dirty floors required.

How it works: Do 3-4 sets of the recommended number of reps for each exercise below. For best results, do this standing oblique workout after your regular strength or cardio session, up to four days a week.

Oblique Twists Muscles Worked

Your abs consist of three major muscles: the rectus abdominis, the obliques, and the transverse abdominis.

The primary muscle worked during is standing oblique twists is oblique.

Secondary muscle worked are serratus muscles, Gluteus Medius, Gluteus Minimus, Psoas Major and abs

Standing Oblique Twists Exercise Guide

Standing Oblique Twists (also known as standing twists, side twists, oblique twists) is a dynamic standing abs exercise for the obliques.

This oblique exercise will help in a development of functional core and well-looking midsection.

Don’t underestimate the benefit of this standing oblique move. Ensure that you’re twisting your whole torso, not just your arms, to get the full benefit.

Standing Oblique Twist.

How To Do Standing Oblique Twists

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, and bring your arms to your chest.
  2. Brace your core and begin to twist your upper body to the left side of your body, then the right.
  3. Keep your body still during the motion; only your torso moves.
  4. Exhale on the turns, inhale when coming back.
  5. Repeat until all reps have been completed.


  • Keep your lower body stable throughout the movement.
  • Engage your abs and slowly twist your torso

Standing Oblique Twist Variations and Modifications

Standing oblique twist exercises come in different varieties. Oblique twists are versatile and easy to perform. In fact, there is no one-way to perform an oblique twist.

Each oblique twist is unique and will keep any workout routine interesting.

You can easily and effective do the standing oblique Twist with Plate, Barbell, Machine, and Cable.

1. Standing Plate Twists

Standing Plate Twist (aka Torso Rotation) is best used for warming up the oblique abdominal muscles and the mobilization of the torso.

It’s important to know that this exercise won’t make your waist smaller, as this is a pretty popular myth. When you become lean, however, the exercise can help to make that area look a bit more toned.

Standing Oblique Twists with Plate

How To Do Standing Plate Oblique Twists

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, while holding the plate (weight) with both hands.
  2. Bring your arms to your chest, then, using your abs, twist your torso as you bring your arms to the left side of your body, then the right.
  3. Keep your body still during the motion; only your torso moves.
  4. Exhale on the turns, inhale when coming back.


  • Keep your torso and arms straight and the movement under control.
  • Make sure to get a full range of motion, twisting from one side all the way to the other side, and then back again.

2. Standing Barbell Twist

The standing barbell oblique twist exercise focuses on your obliques. Use the barbell twist to strengthen the twisting movement pattern of your body.

It is a great idea to stop halfway through some reps, and attempt to resist the twisting force. This will strengthen your torso’s ability to resist twisting forces.

Standing Barbell Twist

How To Do Standing Barbell Twist

  1. Grab a light barbell and rest it on the upper back, keeping your head facing forward.
  2. Stand up straight, with your feet firmly on the floor at a wider than shoulder width stance, keeping your back straight.
  3. Slowly twist your torso to the right and then to the left. Tense up your mid-section. Twist as far as possible.
  4. Try to keep your abs tight throughout the whole set.
  5. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions


  • Make sure not to rest the weight on your neck.
  • Keep the movement slow and under full control. Do not allow momentum to build up because you can damage your spine.
  • Avoid using heavy weights because the momentum may become too difficult to control.

3. Standing Machine Oblique Twist

You can easily do this Standing Machine Twist in Twisting machine.

It strengthens your core, so they may help you avoid back injury. A strong core is also important for physical strength and balance.

Standing Machine Oblique Twist

How To Do Standing Machine Oblique Twist

  1. Stand on a twist machine with feet hips apart and hold the machine handles.. Assume a normal posture, with your back straight.
  2. Exhale and using your abdominal muscles twist the pelvis slowly to your right, as further as you can, tensing your abs.
  3. Hold the stretch for several seconds and return to your starting position while inhaling.
  4. Perform the stretch on the other side, this time turning to your left, as far as you can without moving your head and upper torso


  • Keep your head and upper torso in their starting position – immobile.

4. Standing Cable Oblique Twist

The standing oblique cable twist is an isolation exercise that works the oblique muscles of the core.

It’s unique in that it not only helps to strengthen the core muscles, but it’s a functional exercise because it is performed on the feet.

Cable Twist

How To Do Standing Cable Twist

  1. Attach a handle to a shoulder-height cable pulley. Grasp the handle with both hands, either with your fingers interlaced or with one hand over the other. Stand next to the machine with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  2. Keeping your arms straight, pull the handle in a twisting motion across your body to your opposite side until your torso faces away from the pulley.
  3. Hold for a count of two. Then slowly reverse the movement to return to the starting position.
  4. Repeat for the prescribed number of repetitions. Repeat the exercise on your opposite side.


  • Keep your arms straight, shoulders locked in place.
  • Don’t lock the knees and hips. Allow the hips and knees to rotate slightly.
  • Control the weight the whole time.

5. Standing Dumbbell Twist

The standing dumbbell twist is an excellent rotational exercise that targets your core, especially your obliques. During rotation, this will also help develop strength and flexibility in your hips and lower back.

 It looks simple, but it’s a real challenge. If you are a beginner, keep a dumbbell close to the body. You can increase the difficulty by straightening your arms.

standing dumbbell oblique twist

How To Do A Standing Dumbbell Twist

  1. Hold a dumbbell with both hands and hold it vertically.
  2. With straight arms, raise the dumbbell in front of you, so it’s parallel to the floor.
  3. Contract your core and then twist to one side, just past your shoulders, without moving your lower body.
  4. Hold for a count of two. Then slowly reverse the movement to return to the starting position.
  5. Repeat the desired number of times from both sides.

6. Resistance Band Oblique Twist

A great exercise for full-body mobility and flexibility.

Start with a band that offers light to moderate resistance. If your muscles are not fatigued after several sets, then you should consider increasing the resistance level to the next level.

Resistance abd standing Oblique Twist

How To Do Resistance Band Oblique Twist

  • The resistance band should be attached to a stable object at waist height.
  • Stand a foot away and hold the ends of the bands with your hands.
  • Stand with your arms stretched out in front of you.
  • Pull the bands across your body, twisting as you pull.
  • Hold for two seconds on the turn, and then return to your starting position.
  • Do the 10-12 reps from each side.

7. Standing Oblique Twists with Medicine Ball

The medicine ball is a perfect addition to any gym workout. It is small and easy to use for a productive and fast workout

standing medicine ball oblique twist

How To Do medicine ball Twist

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart and your knees slightly bent.
  • Hold medicine ball in front of chest with arms bent.
  • When looking straight ahead, contract the abdominal muscles and slowly turn the torso to the right.
  • Then slowly reverse the movement to return to the starting position.


The standing oblique twist is a great exercise for targeting the core muscles, specifically the obliques. It also works the serratus anterior, rectus abdominis, glutes.

The standing oblique twist helps to strengthen your abdominal muscles as well as improve your posture.

You can perform the oblique twist in different variations by using plate, barbell, and cable.

Know More About Abs And Oblique Training


12 Best Standing Oblique Exercises That Will Work Your Core

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