Man…I love alliterations, especially when they mean a tighter mid-section (ok, maybe that segue didn’t work, work with me here).
And that’s why today we are going to talk abdominals (absolutely awesome abdominals that is).
A lot of people get stuck in the rut of crunchies or traditional sit-ups to work their abs, when really there is a world of ab exercises out there to choose from—many that much better recruit your core and entire body system then traditional crunchies.
Here are some of my favorites:
Stability Ball Alphabets: Place a stability ball underneath your elbows, as if you were doing a plank, with the ball underneath your arms. Trace the alphabet with your arms, using the stability ball movement to draw each letter.
Stability Ball Circles: Same positioning as above, but this time do circles. I normally aim for 30 on each side for each set. You can change the size of your circles to target different areas of your mid-section.
Stability Ball Jack Knife: This is one of my favorites! Place your hands on a bench and your feet on a stability ball. Start in a flat plank position and pull you free towards the bench.
- Variation #1: Pull your feet toward the bench, bending your knees to crunch yourself into a ball at the contraction.
- Variation #2: Pull your feet toward the bench keeping your legs straight so you really jack-knife your way up and back.
- Variation #3: Add a push up to #1 or #1 when you are in the extended position.
Walkouts: Start standing and slowly bend over and walk your hands out until you end in a plank position (you can add a push up here if you’d like). Walk back, until you resume standing position.
- Variation #1: Instead of a push-up at the extended point, lift one arm and then the next, targeting the obliques.
Ab Row: Start in a plank position with dumbells in each hand. Keeping your body as flat as possible pull each arm-up up to your waist, as if you were doing a dumbell row. The secret here is to not shift your weight from side to side as you pull alternating hands.
There you have it! A few of my favorites. Try them out, or make a circuit of three and rotated through three to five times.
What are you favorite ab workouts?
Photo Credit: My abs (three weeks out from my figure competition)