Strength (Video): The Kneeling Kickback with Arm Extensions

Strength (Video): The Kneeling Kickback with Arm Extensions

Dick Moss, Editor, Physical Education

The Kneeling Kickback with Arm Extension is an excellent exercise for anybody who must run, jump and lift their arms.

The exercise emphasizes the gluteus maximus, the deltoid (shoulder) muscles, and the serratus anterior muscles (that stabilize the shoulder blades and are used when throwing a punch). It also involves the quads, hamstrings and works the core because it employs the erector spinae muscles of the spine, the quadratus laborum muscles of the lower back, and the abdominal muscles for stability.

Since the exercise uses inexpensive resistance bands, it's appropriate for physical education classes.

Students kneel on all fours, with the handles of the tubing around the thumbs of both hands and the tube looped around the bottom of one foot.

To begin the exercise, students push backwards with the leg until it is completely extended in a horizontal position. The movement will be like lifting from the down-position in a single-leg squat. The leg is brought back until it's at 90 degrees, then the movement is repeated.

Once this movement is mastered, increase the exercise's difficulty by lifting the opposite arm as the leg extends. This increases the stretch on the band, increasing the resistance while engaging additional shoulder, back and core muscles.

Perform for 8-20 repetitions, depending on the strength of the band and the desired effect. Eight to twelve reps is great for general purposes.

Technique Tips

  • Exhale as the leg is pressed backwards and inhale as leg is brought back towards the body.
  • Keep the back flat, do not arch.
  • Do not rotate the body or lift the hip of the leg that is moving. Maintaining this flat body position requires engagement of the core stabilizers.

Video Demonstration

To see a demonstration of the
Kneeling Kickback with Arm Extension, watch the video below:


  1. Kimberly Corp, Pilates Exercise, Kickback with Exercise Band
  2. Frederic Delavier, Women's Strength Training Anatomy, Human Kinetics, 2003.
  3. Shelley MacDonald, Caribbean Workout, Outdoor Living Network, 5/22/09.
  4. Beth Shaw, Beth Shaw's YogaFit, Human Kinetics Publshers, 2001,

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