For this exercise, let’s first give a shout-out to the man with one of the all-time best six-pack in the biz—Bruce Lee. Unlike most guys, Lee was both ripped and strong all at once. And one of the reasons for his strength was some of the advanced body-weight exercises he used in his training. One such move was the dragon flag.


Your core is a series of muscles that wrap around your entire torso, and this exercise targets all of them ultimately getting you that memorable six pack.

Dragon flags help create more torso rigidity—which can benefit your squats, deadlifts, bench presses, clean and presses, even sport-specific training and power development.

In the long term, movements including both full-body engagement plus long-duration tension (static and engaging strength-training movement patterns) should be preferred.


Dragon flags can be modified if you can’t perform them right away by simply doing negatives. For this, lower as slowly as possible, then drop your feet onto the bench and drive back to the starting point.

You could lower as far as you can and then tuck your knees to your chest instead of raising back up and keeping your body straight. This would be considered the next level up.

If you can hit the knee tucks and control the negative to a stopping point above the bench and with your body in a straight line, you can then move to the full execution.


Set up on a bench with your hands secured around the back of it. Lever your entire body up as one rigid unit, until you’re nearly vertical, then lower yourself slowly to the floor, using your abs to brace.

Your body shouldn’t “break”—it should appear as a straight line from shoulders to toes.

Bruce Lee

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