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How to Do Roman Chair Exercises

How to Do Roman Chair Exercises

Exercising is the best way to keep your body fit and in perfect shape. You may have a lot of equipment to perform exercises on, but using a roman chair is the most common of them all. However, using it in the right way is very important. Here is an article on how to do roman chair exercises properly.
Divya Bichu
The roman chair is an exercise equipment, usually used for lower body workouts. There are variety of roman chairs available in market. Whatever you may opt for or if you already have brought one; it is important, that you use it in the right way. It consists of a long bar at the base of the machine, where you can tuck in your legs for better grip and stability. It looks like a normal chair except that there is no back support. This is done, so that you can move your back easily at different angles while exercising. No back support also helps in maintaining appropriate posture and balance; that works on muscles of the legs. Of course there are no handles or hand rests to support your hands. Therefore, while exercising on a roman chair it is important you cross your hands over the chest to avoid unwanted arising.

The muscles targeted by this machine are usually lower body muscles. Floor exercises are usually performed on the Roman chair (also called captain's chair), the only difference being performing the same exercise on the machine may increase strength and flexibility. Like in case of sit-ups, your range during the extension phase is limited and you have to return to the starting position once you reach the floor. The Roman chair in this case, allows you to extend your range, way beyond neutral, flexing movements. The basic design of the Roman chair may vary, but the purpose remains the same. I have listed down a few exercises to perform on a Roman chair. Take a look.

Roman Chair Workouts

Roman Chair Back Extensions
  • Place your feet on the foot tray or tuck them under the rolled cushions at the base of the chair and your thighs on the pad allowing your body to hang forward.
  • Cross your arms at your chest and keep your back straight.
  • Bend forward from the hips towards the floor, keeping your back straight. Inhale while you do so.
  • Exhale when you lengthen your body to the original position.
  • Keep your neck relaxed and focus on using your abs to lift your body, which will strengthen your core muscles.
  • Repeat at least 10-15 times initially, gradually increase the counts as you get comfortable.
Roman Chair Sit-ups
  • Sit on the roman chair with your legs tucked under the padded bar and attain a comfortable sitting posture.
  • Cross your arms over your chest. This is your original position.
  • Inhale as you lower your upper body backwards, in a way that is parallel to the ground.
  • Hold. Now raise your body by flexing your hips until you are back in the original position.
  • Make sure you keep your core tight and follow the correct breathing technique.
  • Initially it may seem a little difficult, but gradually as you get a hang of it increase the number of counts.
Roman Chair Knee Raises
  • Stand with your back against the roman chair and grip the handles tightly.
  • Pressing your hips firmly against the back on the chair, bend your knees and lift your legs until your thighs are parallel to your hips.
  • Do not swing your legs, instead lift them, sucking in your abdominal muscles.
  • Pause, then lower your legs to the original position.
  • Make sure you do the roman chair knee raises slowly.
  • Repeat 10-15 times.
Roman Chair Oblique Crunch
  • On a 45 degree roman chair, place the right side of your hip on the larger pad and your legs in the foot tray.
  • Now, crunch your oblique at the waist to lower your torso to the right.
  • Lower it down until you feel a good stretch in your right oblique.
  • Raise your torso back to the starting position.
  • The primary muscles put to work here are the obliques, it is the best exercise to get rid of love handles.
  • Repeat 15-20 times initially and gradually increase the count.
Roman chairs are also called hyper extension machines, this is because of the movements it allows. Since you have to use your core trunk muscles to perform any sort of exercises, they are a great choice for toning and strengthening your muscle groups.