If you want to take you abs to the next level, these 5 exercises will develop your stomach like a statue. Adding these exercises to your workout will make the difference between a normal flat stomach and an eye grabbing pack of abs.
The following exercises have been used by the best physiques in the game from Arnold Schwarzenegger to fitness models on the cover of Men's Health. If you want that look, don't neglect those oblique muscles.
Getting that v shape waist will make you the star at the beach or anywhere your body is shown off. Here are the 5 exercises to add to your workout routine.
1. Roman Chair Knee Lifts
Instruction: Support yourself by your forearms on a roman chair. Lift your knees towards your midsection. Use your abs to pull your legs up. Rotate your pelvis forward to really crunch your abs. Exhale on the way up and inhale as you bring your legs back down.
2. Side bends
Instructions: Stand in good body alignment (abs tight, chest up, back straight) with feet in comfortable position. Hold dumbbell in one hand. In a controlled motion, start lowering body to same side dumbbell is held, to comfortable position. Once you stop, bend the opposite direction to contract abdominals/obliques. While maintaining the controlled motion, continue left and right to desired number of repetitions. Do not allow muscles to relax before next repetition
3. Seated Twist
Instructions: Sit on a flat weight bench or in a chair with your feet firmly on the floor. Place a broomstick or lightweight barbell on your shoulders, keeping your back straight and upright. Slowly twist your torso to the left, pause for a moment and then move back to the center. You can do continuous repetitions on the same side and then move to the other side. Or, you can target both sides by twisting to the left, returning to the center and then twisting to the right to complete a full repetition. Keep your back straight and your head up, while keeping your abs constantly contracted throughout the entire exercise.
4. Twisting crunches
Lie flat on your back on mat with lower legs on bench. Place hands behind neck or head.
Flex and twist waist to raise upper torso from mat to one side. Return until back of shoulders contact mat. Repeat to opposite side alternating twists.
Leg elevation keeps pelvis tilted back keeping low back on mat. Certain individuals may need to keep their neck in neutral position with space between their chin and sternum, particularly with their hands is behind their heads.
5. Leg tucks
- Sit on a bench with the legs stretched out in front of you slightly below parallel and your arms holding on to the sides of the bench. Your torso should be leaning backwards around a 45-degree angle from the bench. This will be your starting position.
- Bring the knees in toward you as you move your torso closer to them at the same time. Breathe out as you perform this movement.
- After a second pause, go back to the starting position as you inhale.
- Repeat for the recommended amount of repetitions.
Variations: You can also perform this exercise on a mat on the floor just by placing your arms to the sides. In this case, the legs will be stretched and elevated slightly over the floor. Also, as you become more advanced you can hold a dumbbell in between your feet or attach a pulley to them for added resistance. However, you have to be very careful when adding weight to this exercise as if you add too much too quickly you could get a hernia.
Note: Jogging and Running This is the king of all exercises and build your core strength and burns fat so you can see the muscle development.
Note: Eating healthy is also important to having a great set of abs.
In The New Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding Arnold discusses the issue of abs that are too thick. He says that this happens as a result of training abs with added resistance.
It doesn't take extra weight added to these exercises to get the results.
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