Probably the most sought after look for men is the elusive ‘six-pack’ of abs, and for ladies is that tiny, trim waist, to help create that hour-glass figure.
The following exercises are sure to strengthen your abdominals, obliques, and lower back. If coupled with the proper diet and aerobic exercise, you will have that cut, flat “washboard” look, you so desire.
I want you to be aware that these exercises in themselves will not allow you to see that chiseled look you’re after. It’s only when you are able to get your bodyfat down low enough, that you’ll finally “find” those “missing” abs.
Although as important as you think having a trim waistline is it is not nearly as important as having a strong core or torso, which includes those same abdominals, obliques and lower back muscles. These muscles affect posture, support the trunk, stabilize the spine and pelvis, and assist in breathing.
By doing these exercises you will be strengthening that all-important core, so you will be receiving a double benefit when you do this short but powerful midsection routine.
Before you begin any exercise program, consult with your doctor. Begin slowly and increase the number of repetitions gradually. If any exercise causes you pain, discontinue it.
Here are my personal favorite ab exercises:
- Hip ups– Now for me this is the number one exercise for building the whole abdominal region. Lie flat on your back with both legs in the air at 90 degrees to the body. While keeping the legs at this vertical position, lift your hips off the ground marginally. Hold this position for 2-3 seconds. Start with 2 sets of 5-8 repetitions. Gradually add a repetition as capable until arriving at 2-3 sets of 20.
- Abdominal Crunch– Lie flat on your back, with your knees bent, arms folded across your chest, curl up slowly. Keeping lower back flat against surface, exhale as you move upward not to exceed 30 degrees. Start with 2 sets of 5-8 repetitions. Gradually add a repetition as capable until arriving at 2-3 sets of 20. For a more advanced progression, hold a weight or dumbbell on your chest.
- Pelvic Tilt– This exercise is great for the lower back. Lie flat on your back, with your knees bent. Pull in your stomach so that the small of your back is flat on the floor. Then tighten your buttocks, and raise your hips. Hold for a count of 10. Start with 2 sets of 5-8 repetitions. Gradually add a repetition as capable until arriving at 2-3 sets of 20.
- Russian Twist– This exercise is excellent for the oblique muscles. Sit on the ground with your trunk at 45 degrees to the ground, upper thighs at 45 degrees to the ground, your knees bent and with your feet off the ground. Arms straight with your palms together, twist all the way to the right and then to the left. Be sure to twist from the waist not the shoulders. Start with 2 sets of 5-8 repetitions. Gradually add a repetition as capable until arriving at 2-3 sets of 20. For a more advanced progression, hold a weight or dumbbell.
That’s it! Four exercises and you have hit all your abdominal muscles. Please if you are not used to exercising, progress very slowly. I would recommend doing only the first two exercises for one set each the first week you start, and then add one exercise each following week. Keep progressing slowly, until you have reached your desired sets and repetitions. If you have been following a good nutritional program, it won’t be long until you have that sleek sexy waistline you have been wanting for so long!
Remember if you need a fitness professional to help you achieve those sought after abs please contact us at 407-529-4512 or by email using the form below
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