The personal trainer behind Ryan Gosling’s abs in his depiction of Ken for the Barbie movie has revealed the workout behind the body.
A-list fitness instructor David Higgins revealed that Ryan, and his fellow Kens including Simu Liu and Ncuti Gatwa, used a nine-minute workout to keep their core chiseled for the shoots.
That was on top of a range of other workouts and competitive challenges and games to keep them in peak condition – just like the figurines they depicted.
Higgins told GQ: ‘It created a ‘we’re all in it together’ kind of feeling, which helped with motivation.’
Discover all the stages of the Kens’ ab workout by reading on.
Competitive edge: The personal trainer behind Kens’ appearances in Barbie has revealed the nine-minute ab workout which helped them to get in shape
He’s just Ken: 42-year-old Hollywood star Ryan Gosling portrays the standard Ken in the movie based on the Mattel doll alongside Margot Robbie as ‘stereotypical’ Barbie
Although Ryan clearly took the ab routine very seriously, Higgins said his favourite parts were the challenges.
‘Ryan loved the plank challenge and the pull-up challenge,’ he shared.
‘Simu and Ncuti were more into the push-ups and specific abdominal crunches we were doing. Everyone got very competitive.’
‘Everyone was just having a good time,’ he continued, ‘no one was miserable.
‘It wasn’t about training for a single shirtless scene, it was a broad brush — which isn’t to say they didn’t give it their all.’
But if you are looking to look as chiseled as the Kens, here is the nine-minute, seven-part – each done for one minute – workout.
Sit upright pulling your legs in to your chest, putting your hands on your shins.
Roll backwards so your upper back is on the floor, or preferably a mat, keeping your knees tucked in.
Then repeat, returning to the upright position before tucking down again, for a minute.
Lie on your back, with your left leg crossed over the right.
Lift your feet and legs straight up as high as you can, and then slowly twist to the left then right, before slowly lowering them to the ground.
Repeat for a minute before swapping your legs and repeating for another minute.
Two step crunch
Perform a crunch as normal, starting on your back with your legs bent and feet on the floor, but pause halfway on your way up into the crunch, and again at the top.
This adds more time under tension.
Cross your elbow into your opposite knee at the top of a crunch, before opening back out on the way down.
Do this for one minute on each side.
Lie on your back again in a crunch, and imagine there is a rope feeding between your feet.
Imagine crunching up to try and grip onto that rope and pull yourself up one arm at a time.
In a seated position with bent knees, lean back to feel tension in your stomach and lift your ankles.
Sway your feet left and right as far as possible in either direction.
As usual, do this for a minute.
Static dead bug
Again on your back with your knees bent, stretch your arms out and crunch your knees up one at a time, bring your alternative hand down to meet them.
Hold this for 30 seconds before swapping legs and arms for the second 30.
Beach body ready: Given his ‘beach’ profession, Ryan Gosling’s Ken’s abs were quite a regular feature in Barbie
Did Ryan Gosling go on a diet to play Ken?
The Kens’ rules around food were not a strict as you might expect given that workout routine.
There was no cutting down on carbs or beefing up on protein, the only rule was not to eat processed foods – ‘nothing that comes in plastic’ – and no snacking.