If you’re heading on holiday, need to get beach ready or would generally like to improve the appearance and strength of your abdomen then you need an effective ab workout which guarantees to give you good results.
If washboard abs on your wish list, follow these workouts accompanied by a balanced diet and a number of cardio and general fitness exercises and you’ll want to show off your abs at every opportunity.
The plank is a well-known stomach endurance exercise which requires putting your whole body weight into your stomach and holding for a prolonged period of time. The longer you do this, the stronger your core.
The normal plank focuses on your central stomach muscles but why not try side planks, on both sides which will help to strengthen your outer abdomen, improving your overall core strength.
This is one exercise where you can really feel the burn.
On a mat, sit upright and slightly raise your legs, crossing them at the ankles. With a medicine ball or some form of weight, twist your upper body from left to right taking the weight with you. Ensure you control your twists and you’ll soon be able to feel your stomach muscles contracting, remember to squeeze your stomach at every twist.
Lying flat on a mat, pull your legs together and lift them up, keeping your legs as straight as possible.
You’ll soon be able to feel this in your stomach, and remember for maximum impacts ensure you control the speed, particularly when raising your and as your feet reach the floor again, you don’t want your legs to be swinging all over the place.
If you suffer from lower back pain, place your hands under your bum to give you a lift and offer you some support.
Ensuring that your hips are straight, get into a high plank position. Alternate moving your knees, one after the other to touch your arms, going under your body. Alternate your legs as quickly as possible and you’ll quickly be able to feel this burn.
You can switch this up by crossing your legs to the opposite side of your body such as push your left leg to your right arm and vice versa.
Lie flat, facing upwards and legs straight.
Take a big inhale and as you exhale; push your upper body up, from your core so you’re in a sitting position. Remember to keep your legs straight, knees tight and feet upright, remember to squeeze your abs on your way up and once you’re in the final sitting position.
Lying on a mat, bring your legs and upper body up, so you’re in a sort of cradling position. Positioning your hands behind your head, alternate your knees bringing them towards you one at a time. At the same time, use the alternate elbow and touch the knee and elbow, doing this as quickly as possible for as long as possible.
Lie on a mat and bring your knees up, bring your upper body down and use your hands to touch your feet, swinging your body from left to right.
If you feel confident with this, hold a flat weight in either arm to increase the pressure on your core, making the workout harder and more effective.
Combine ab workouts with general fitness and other cardio activities to increase weight loss and health. If at any point you have any heart problems or strains stop immediately and seek advice from a personal trainer in the gym who will be able to advise you further. Don’t worry if your neck feels like it is straining, this is normal and just means that your core isn’t strong enough yet; keep at it and you’ll soon feel all the pressure coming from your abdomen.