The superman is an exercise for the core and posterior chain, which is the group of muscles running on the back of the body. The superman primarily targets the Erector Spinae of the lower back, and it also works the hamstrings, abs and glutes as secondary muscles. The traps and shoulders serve as stabilizers.
Practicing the superman will improve your posture and help you to prevent back pains. This is especially beneficial for people who's work require them to sit infront of a desk the whole day. While sitting hunched over, the spine is flexed forward. This exercise will flex your spine back releasing the back muscles. Over time, this might reduce the forward curvature of the thoracic spine acquired from years of idle sitting.
The superman is a great exercise for beginners. Its a simple way to work your back, which is usually hard to train if you don't go to a gym. This exercise is very easy to perform and there is relatively low risk for injury. Another benefit is that the superman requires no equipment, and it can be done anywhere.
This exercise can be done as reps, or as a static (isometric) exercise, where you hold the position for as long as you can. Doing the isometric version will focus on building stability and endurance over time, while doing reps will promote strength in contraction. It is best to practice both variations since both will build strength in different ways.
Raise the legs and arms in a slow and controlled manner. No jerking movements, this will make the exercise less effective and put too much stress on your lower back.
Keep the arms and legs straight as you lift. But don't lock them, avoid bending your knees in an attempt to raise your legs higher.
It’s important to keep your head and neck neutral during the Superman’s exercise. This means you don’t want it moving or strained, while you perform the exercise. Straining the neck might cause neck problems overtime.
Don't hold your breath. Keep breathing as you hold the position.