Barbell core workouts strengthen the entire midsection. (Photo via Pexels/Li Sun)

5 Essential Barbell Workouts for Women

If you want to give your core a solid workout, it's time to give barbell workouts a try. Barbell is the ultimate equipment for strength training, as it helps you achieve a jacked core, so it makes sense to use it to intensify your overall core development.

Fortunately, there are several barbell exercises that target the entire core muscle, including the rectus abdominis, erector spinae, transverse abdominis and obliques, and increase your core strength.


By using this gym tool, you will be able to add resistance to every exercise, and maximize your training level for more hypertrophy as well. As you will be moving the weight with your arms while keeping your torso stable, you will target your core muscles from different angles that are impossible with traditional core workouts.

Best Barbell Workouts For Core


Add these five barbell workouts to your routine to take your core routine to another level:

Zercher squat challenges your quads and lower-body. (Image via Unsplash / Victor Freitas)

1) Zercher Squat

To do this barbell workout:

  • Stand upright with the barbell in the crook of both elbows, keeping your hands together in front of your chest.
  • Stand with your feet at shoulder distance, and make sure to keep your toes slightly out.
  • Maintaining this position, slowly squat down while spreading your knees and shifting your weight on your heels.
  • Lower down till your hips are parallel, and push through your heels to stand back up.
  • As you move through this exercise, make sure to keep your lower back flat and shoulders down and back.

2) Barbell Russian Twist

To do this exercise:

  • Put one end of the bar to the corner of the wall, and load the other end with a weight plate. Stand with your legs at hip distance, and move the loaded side in front of you with both arms properly extended.
  • Lower the bar slowly to your right while rotating your shoulders and hips. Bring the bar back to the centre, and rotate towards your left, keeping your arms fully extended at all times.

3) Straight Leg Sit-up

To do this barbell workout:

  • Lie straight on your back with your legs together.
  • Hold a barbell overhead with your hands at shoulder distance. Keep your arms straight and overhead, and slowly lift your torso till you get into a sitting position.
  • Initially, use a bar without any weight to ensure proper form and technique. Once you are confident, add weight, and also increase your rep range.

Squats are one of the best ways to work on your abs muscles. (Image via Unsplash / Mariah Krafft)

4) Barbell Abs Rollout


To do this exercise:

  • Hold the bar tightly, and take a kneeling position on the floor. Make sure you grip the bar at shoulder width.
  • Keeping your back straight and core tight, push the bar out till your arms get extended straight in the front on the floor.
  • Keep your hands completely straight during the exercise, and also make sure not to bend your hips.
  • Engage your core muscles, and use them to pull the bar back to the starting position, and repeat.

suitcase deadlift works your lower back and hamstring muscles. (Image via Unsplash / John Arano)

5) Suitcase Deadlift

To do this barbell workout:

  • Stand tall next to a barbell, and bend your knees and hips to grip it tightly in the centre.
  • As you hold the bar, make sure your butts and upper legs are higher than your knees, and also maintain a stable back with a tight core.
  • Looking forward, push through your heels or midfoot to lift the bar off the floor.
  • As you do so, do not allow the weight of the bar to bend your upper body to the side. Keep your shoulders level throughout the movement.
  • When the bar reaches your mid-thigh, slowly hinge at your hips, and end the exercise by returning to the standing position.
  • Bend your knees, and lower your hips to bring the bar back down on the floor.
  • Repeat.


The aforementioned barbell workouts are sure to burn your core muscles and strengthen your entire midsection.


As a rule of thumb, it's recommended to do these exercises at least thrice a week to prevent overtraining the muscles. These workouts are very effective and shouldn’t be difficult for regular gym-goers.

However, if you're a beginner, it's best to start with basic barbell exercises till you are well-versed with the right form of the workouts. Although the aforementioned exercises are result-worthy, they can be dangerous if you don’t know how to perform them correctly.

Moreover, make sure to consult a doctor before starting these barbell workouts if you have any health condition or recently have had injury or surgery.

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