The side plank leg lift is a challenging exercise that builds essential core and glute strength. As we move into the “off season” nearly everyone can benefit from stronger hips by way of the gluteus medius.

Why it’s important

The side plank leg lift is a very difficult to do correctly (without letting hips sag and moving legs in very controlled manner). This is because it taps into small stabilizers that don’t get worked directly very often. Yet these small stabilizers tend to lead to lots of recurring and nagging injuries, particularly for runners. It also moves body in Frontal Plane (side-to-side) which is often overlooked.

Who it’s good for

I love this exercise for everyone, but especially runners. Runners should be able to do a set of 20 clean on each side.

Execute it

From side plank position on elbow, stabilize the hips and slowly lift and lower the top leg in a controlled manner for 10 reps per side before switching sides. Lift brings the top leg parallel to the floor, lower “down” leg without touching. Modify by bending lower leg and supporting on knee.

Jeremy’s personal training philosophy

Portland personal trainer Jeremy HyattIt’s important to start with the basics and move from there. Too often, people get into complicated movements and goals before they have the proper fundamentals, which can lead to negative results.

My number one job is to get my clients stronger for the things they want and need to do.

Hyatt Training is a collective of certified, enthusiastic and innovative personal trainers in Portland, Oregon. To learn more about our personal trainers or to set up a free consultation to see how they could help you, email us at