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Side Jackknife 101 Video Tutorial

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Side Jackknife
Side Jackknife

Exercise Synopsis

Target Muscle Group


Secondary Targets




Force Type


Required Equipment

Body Weight

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The Side Jackknife is a bodyweight exercise designed to target the abdominal muscles, particularly the obliques. It involves lying on one's side with legs extended and lifting the torso towards the legs, creating a lateral bending motion. With no secondary targets, the focus remains solely on engaging and strengthening the obliques through controlled movement. This exercise effectively enhances core stability and promotes lateral flexion, aiding in overall core strength and functional fitness. Since it requires no equipment, it can be easily incorporated into bodyweight training routines, making it accessible for individuals seeking to improve abdominal strength and stability.

How to Perform

  1. Begin by lying on your side on a flat surface, ensuring that your legs are straight and aligned with your hip and shoulder.

  2. Bend your bottom arm at the elbow and position it directly under your shoulder for support.

  3. Raise and bend your top elbow, placing your hand behind your head for stability.

  4. Engage your oblique muscles and lift your legs as high as possible while maintaining control and stability throughout the movement.

  5. Hold the lifted position for a brief moment, focusing on the contraction of your obliques.

  6. Slowly lower your legs back to the starting position.

  7. Complete the desired number of repetitions on one side before switching to the other side to work the opposite oblique.

  8. Ensure proper form and alignment throughout the exercise to maximize effectiveness and prevent injury.

  9. Remember to breathe steadily throughout the movement to maintain oxygen flow to your muscles.

  10. This bodyweight exercise targets the abdominal muscles, specifically the obliques, without the need for any additional equipment, making it convenient for at-home or on-the-go workouts.


  1. Begin lying on your side with legs straight and aligned with hip and shoulder.

  2. Maintain proper alignment by bending bottom arm at elbow and placing it under shoulder.

  3. Bend top elbow and place hand behind head for stability.

  4. Engage oblique muscles to lift legs as high as possible while controlling movement.

  5. Hold lifted position briefly to maximize oblique contraction.

  6. Lower legs back to starting position with control and precision.

  7. Complete desired number of repetitions on one side before switching to work opposite oblique.

  8. Focus on steady breathing throughout exercise to support muscle engagement and oxygen flow.

  9. Ensure proper form and alignment to prevent injury and maximize effectiveness.

  10. Utilize body weight only, making this exercise convenient for home or travel workouts with no equipment needed.

How Not to Perform