Are you looking for an ab workout that doesn’t bore you or strain your low back? If so, we have some good news for you since the days of attempting to crunch your way to a flatter stomach are long gone as we move into 2018.
While once the king of ab exercises, the “crunch” and “sit-up” wouldn’t even make our list of the top 25 ab exercises for 2018. Why? Well, to make a long story short there are tons of other exercise that are more effective and less stressful to the low back. It’s 2018 so let’s leave the old school ab exercises in the past and focus on what’s most effective today.
The exercises below are our top 5 ab exercises if you’re looking for a leaner and stronger tummy in 2018.
Exercise #1 Food Tracking, Support and Accountability
For those who train at Fuse you saw this one coming. The #1 thing you should focus on initially is food if you plan on slimming down your midsection. There’s nothing more effective then tracking your food while receiving on-going support and accountability to ensure you’re improving. Flat abs start and end in the kitchen. Period. Combine clean eating with the four exercises below and you’ll be very happy with your new stomach.
Exercise #2 Hollow Hold
Once you get your nutrition on board it’s time to start addressing the abs with strength based movements. While lying on your back, lift your legs 5-8 inches off the floor, then reach your hands towards your feet by bringing your shoulders 4-6 inches off the ground. You’ll notice that your body is now in the shape of a “spoon”. It’s very important to remember that your low back should be pressed into the ground. Hold for 5-30 seconds and repeat for 3-5 sets.
Exercise #3 Hardstyle Plank
The average plank is often ineffective since the body is not braced properly. If there’s no tension in your plank there’s often little to no results. For the hardstyle plank put your feet together and make it a point to tense your quads, butt, and abs. Also, be sure to drive your elbows into the mat to get your lats on board. This will create full body tension that will destroy the average plank. You can hold this plank for 5-30 seconds and repeat for 3-5 sets.
Exercise #4 Bridge
For a complete core you want to make sure you’re also addressing the back, glutes and hamstrings as well. The bridge comes in many different flavors that we can’t cover in a brief post but we do recommend you first start with the short bridge and then build your way up. While lying on your back with you knees bent, lift your butt off the ground and hold for 5-30 seconds for 3-5 sets. To make this exercise better squeeze a pillow or ball between your knees while you’re lifting your hips.
Exercise #5 Straight Leg Raises – Toes To Bar
Slow and controlled leg raises play a major role building a strong core so be sure to add these into your routine after you have success with the previous three movements. This will be a spring/summer move since you’ll likely need to stop by your local park to use one of the many bars in the play ground. Getting your toes to touch the bar requires great strength and mobility so take your time if you’re new to this exercise. You may want to start by keeping your knees bent initially to ensure your body is building a strong base. Also, we highly recommend you avoid the fast, sloppy version of leg raises. Focus on using tension to control the exercise not momentum for best results.
There you have it, our top 5 ab exercises for 2018. When you’re ready to start your full body transformation email the Fuse training team at info@FuseFitnessStudio.com to reserve your studio tour.