Front Lever Anatomy, Exercises, Instructions, Hints and Tips

Front Lever Anatomy

Front Lever Anatomy: Front Lever is a beautiful skill performed by gymnasts and advanced calisthenics athletes. Holding the pull-up bar while elevating the body horizontally up with the arms having a 45° angle between them and the body is a fabulous exhibition of strength and skill.

Front Lever is a static hold which requires a high degree of back and core strength as well as the arms. Front Lever is a difficult move to execute and it has been said that for thousands of people who can do over 20 push-ups, only a few can hold a front lever. Not many athletes know how to progress for achieving a perfect Front Lever.

Recommended: Back Lever Anatomy

This article will help you understand the muscles involved in executing a Front Lever so that you can work on their strength in a specific order and progress your Front, Lever.

Let’s start the Anatomy behind Front Lever.

Upper Limb Muscles: Front Lever Anatomy


Rhomboids are rhombus-shaped muscles involved in the retraction of the scapula. This way, they assist in lifting the core towards the arms against gravity.

Latissimus Dorsi:

Latissimus Dorsi also called Lats, help in scapular retraction, adduction, and internal rotation. Strong Lats are important for Front Lever raises.

Teres Major:

Teres Major works as a support for the Lats in movements like adduction, internal rotation, and most important extension of the shoulder.

Posterior Deltoid:

The deltoid is a multifunctional muscle divided into three parts. Here particularly, Posterior Deltoid is involved and acts as a shoulder extensor.

3 Heads of Triceps:

The triceps is the prime extensor of the forearm. The long head of the Triceps acts as an extensor of the arm as well as the shoulder, showing how important it is in the Front Lever.

Wrist and Finger Flexors:

The muscles of the anterior compartment of the forearm particularly the Wrist and Finger Flexors play a great role here. Having a strong grip is important to execute this astonishing move. Here, the Finger Flexors come to the rescue. Wrist flexors are also working here to oppose the effect of gravity and bring the body up.

Pronator Teres:

As the name suggests, this particular muscle pronates the forearm. As you can see in the picture, the person’s forearms are in a pronated state.

Pronator Quadratus:

Also a pronator of the forearm.

Pectoralis Major (sternal):

The sternal head of the Pectoralis Major adducts the arm as well as draws the scapula anteriorly and inferiorly. These are some important movements in executing a Front Lever.

Neck and Torso Muscles

Cervical Flexors:

Cervical Flexors as the Sternocleidomastoid and Anterior Scalenes flexes the neck. This way the neck moves in the opposite direction to the line of action of gravity.

Rectus Abdominis:

Rectus Abdominis makes sure that your trunk doesn’t drop down because of gravity, by flexing the trunk.


While executing a Front Lever, Obliques do the same action as the Rectus Abdominis that is flexing the torso against gravity.

Lower Limb Muscles

Adductor Brevis:

Adductor Brevis adducts the leg to reach an adducted position of the legs as shown, bringing the legs in line with the body. It works with other adductors to adduct the leg.

Adductor Longus:

It is also an adductor of the leg.

Adductor Magnus:

This is the prime adductor of the leg and as discussed above, adduction is such an important movement during the Front Lever.


Front Lever Anatomy

This strap like muscle is a strong adductor of the leg and helps in achieving the same fate as the other adductors.


Front Lever Anatomy

Sartorius helps to flex the hip to elevate the legs against gravity.

Tensor Fascia Lata:

Front Lever Anatomy

Its function is to abduct the leg mainly but in the Front Lever, it will work as a hip flexor, hence elevating the leg.

Pectineus :

Front Lever Anatomy

The pectineus is an important muscle while doing the Front Lever. It not only adducts the leg but also flexes the hip.

Psoas (major and minor):

Front Lever Anatomy

Psoas muscles (Psoas Major and Psoas Minor) participate in flexion of the hip joint thus playing the main role in elevating the leg resisting gravity.

Iliacus :

Front Lever Anatomy

This muscle works with Psoas Major and Minor to flex the hip.

Rectus Femoris:

In addition to flexion of the hip, Rectus Femoris also extends leg at the knee joint and this aligns the leg in level with the Torso.

Quadriceps Vasti Front Lever Anatomy:

Front Lever Anatomy

The three Vasti muscles also come in the category of knee extensors and hip flexors.

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