The Top Exercises For Building Six Pack Abs
The mass majority of men and women, who work out on a regular basis, share the common goal of wanting to achieve a slim waist. A slim stomach can be very attractive, but a six pack is even more impressive. Perfectly sculpted abs prove you’ve worked hard and have achieved something that very few people ever will. As the title suggests, this article will cover the top exercises for building abs.
The truth of the matter is that there isn’t a singular workout, which will help you develop the abs you’ve always dreamed of. Some exercises are great for upper abs, while others are better for the midsection or lower portion of your abs.
With this in mind, it is essential to implement a combination of workouts into your routine. A comprehensive regimen will give you the ability to work all portions of the abs equally. This will make it possible to develop an entire six-pack and not just a two or four-pack. The list compiled below has been constructed after extensive research, EMG studies, and with hands-on experience.
Hanging Leg Raise
The hanging leg raise is a very difficult workout, which takes pure core strength to master. Since the exercise is so tough and focuses mainly on the core muscles, it is incredibly effective for developing and sculpting the abs. Aside from the workout’s effectiveness, it is also a good choice for everyone, due to its scalability. When attempting to pull off this exercise, it is possible to alter it to better accommodate your precise strength and skill level. The user can easily start with bent knee raises, while assuming the Roman chair position. This will work the lower core.
Once you’ve managed to master this particular workout, you can then increase the intensity by switching to straight leg raises. Eventually, you will be able to pull off the very challenging straight leg toe to bar raise. At that point, your core strength will be maximized. Since the exercise can be pulled off in such a diverse set of ways, it is great for everyone and can be effective regardless of your current strength level. Since the exercise is so difficult, it is recommended that you perform it at the beginning of your workout routine. Try 3 sets of 10 or 15 reps at first.
Cable Pallof Press
The cable pallof press has gained in popularity over the past few years, because it allows the abs to do exactly what they’re designed to do. The exercise forces the abs to help stabilize the skeleton. The exercise is considered anti-rotation, since the body will be forced to fight rotation throughout the duration.
Such exercises are immensely beneficial, because they can deliver enormous results, while also greatly reducing the likelihood of injury. And, there are various ways to pull off pallof presses, so they can be alerted to precisely match your skill level.
Eventually, you may be able to pull off the pallof press with a bit of rotation, but it is best to start small and work your way up to something bigger. For instance, start with a cable stack and keep the D-handle right around the height of your shoulders.
When performing this exercise, it is pertinent to maintain a firm grip on the handle at all times. Be sure to use two hands. Also, make sure you do not rotate at all. Throughout the movement, your spine should remain neutral. When performing the cable pallof press, you shouldn’t feel obligated to bulk up on the weights. Steady sets of 10 to 15 reps will do the trick.
Ab exercises, which add resistance to the equation, can be very helpful for perfectly sculpting the core muscles. These exercises are capable of adding visibility to your six-pack. Ab machine crunches are great, because the weight can be increased or decreased to meet your precise preferences and current strength level. When you’ve progressed to the next level, you can always increase the weight to ensure steady progress.
The crunch machine should be situated near the beginning of your ab workout routine. If you use a lower weight, be sure to perform additional reps and vice versa. Performing 3 or 4 sets of 10 to 15 reps is recommended, but this should be based on your strength level and the weight you choose.
Cable Crunch While Kneeling
The kneeling cable crunch is one of the most versatile ab workouts of all. It is possible to pull off this exercise with any cable stack and the user can always adjust the resistance level, as well as their preferred to rep range. Unfortunately, many people perform this exercise incorrectly and this can lead to injuries.
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When attempting to perform this technique, it is essential to relax your body and allow your hips to do the brunt of the work. Do not keep your back flat. Instead, allow your back to bend naturally. Throughout the movement, it is essential to keep your hands at the same height. If this is an exercise that you like, you should position it first or second in your lineup. Be sure to match the sets and reps to your precise strength level.
Squats aren’t the best known exercise for abs, but they can be very effective. Most people perform squats in a way that works the legs and low back. However, if you pull it off correctly, squats will also set your abs on fire. Front and back squats can be used to rip the abs and kick the muscles into hyper drive. Ignore the hype regarding standing on a BOSU ball. This is simply a myth and won’t make a bit of different. Instead, just up the weight a bit. With the right amount of weight, you’ll be able to stimulate the abs as you desire.
When performing this exercise, it is essential to intermix front and back squats. Rotating between front and back over a period of weeks is one possibility or you can alternate from week to week. Be sure to perform this exercise on a day that your body will be relaxed, rested, and ready to go. Don’t try it after a day of heavy lifting.
Medicine Ball And Decline Bench Crunch
The decline bench crunch is yet another versatile exercise that you’ll want to add to your mix. It is possible to manipulate the intensity of the exercise by altering the range or changing the angle of the bench. If you really want to step it up and increase the difficulty of the workout, you’ll want to grab a medicine ball or weight plate. This will make it possible to customize the resistance level even further. And, this will ensure you only need to perform the number of reps that is preferable.
When performing decline bench crunches, it is essential to let your core do the work. If you’re unable to make your abs burn, you’ll need to drop the weight and perfect your posture. With a little practice, you’ll eventually get it right and will be able to feel your abs burning, ripping, and growing bigger!
The Decline Russian Twist
Eventually, you’ll want to focus on your oblique muscles to ensure you can sculpt the perfect six-pack. This is where the decline Russian twist will enter the picture. This exercise really works the oblique muscles and also forces the upper abs to contract. To ensure you get the most out of the exercise, it is best to tuck in your belly or bend to your side. When turning to each side, it is essential to crunch upon a full rotation. This will increase the intensity of the workout, while also enhancing its effectiveness.
When performing this workout, it is essential to keep your arms tight and in line across your body. If they become dangly and are allowed to wiggle freely, the effectiveness of the exercise will decrease. Remember to keep your arms straight and turn at your waist.
Also, focus on using your core and don’t allow your thighs to do the work. If this is an exercise you want to perform regularly, you’ll want to stick it in the middle of your workout routine. Changing the weight of the medicine ball or weight plate will give you the option of increasing the intensity of the workout.
Pike With Exercise Ball
Many people look at the exercise ball and scoff. They simply believe the exercise ball is a waste, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. The pike movement can be one of the most beneficial workouts for targeting the abs. Of course, it is absolutely pertinent to make sure you perform the exercise correctly, in order to get the abs burning.
It can be really awkward to perform this exercise, since the movement of the ball may feel erratic at times. However, with a little bit of practice and patience, you’ll eventually be able to master it.
This specific exercise can be performed at the beginning of your workout. Or, you can add it to the end for a tougher finish. Remember to perfect the posture and form, before performing full sets of exercise ball pikes.
Ab Wheel Rollout
If you are familiar with home exercises, you are probably familiar with the ab wheel. This product is designed with two large wheels, situated on a long handle, with rubber grips. At first glance, you may not give must though to the difficulty of utilizing the ab roller wheel, but when you get down to business, it is an entirely different story. The ab wheel rollout will strengthen the abs, pectoralis majors, and deltoids, if done properly.
The key will be to rollout the ab wheel as far as your body will extend, without allowing your body to touch the floor. It is important to continue inhaling and exhaling, even though it will be challenging, throughout the exercise. Once you extend your body out to the maximum position, you will need to start pulling yourself back up to the initial starting position. Do this gradually, while keeping your abs tight and continuing to breathe.
In the beginning, you will not be able to perform more than 1 or 2 ab wheel rollout repetitions. This is a slowly progressive exercise that will take weeks or months to achieve and advance. Once you get proficient enough, you will be able to move the ab wheel in different directions to increase the intensity level. Moving the ab wheel in a diagonal manner will put more emphasis on the obliques.
Avoid overdoing it, because it will only lead to sore ab muscles, which will set you back several days. When comparing the ab wheel rollout to supine ab exercises, you will never need to worry about a sore coccyx or tailbone.
Many athletes would question why the “plank” was added to this list. It is important to note that this exercise focuses on the major core muscles. The isometric hold or plank activates the internal and external obliques and rectus abdominis. In order to get the most of the plank, you will need to maintain the push-up position for an extended period of time. Not only will the plank strength the pectoralis majors, deltoids, gluteals, and lower back muscles, but it will also help improve posture.
The great benefit of the plank is it doesn’t require any exercise equipment except for a gym mat. The hold can be manipulated to increase the intensity, by lifting one arm or leg, while maintaining the initial hold. The more intense the training, the more effect it will have on the core. If you are just beginning to work out, you will want to start out with 20-second intervals and then progressively increase to the maximum time frame of around 2-4 minutes. This will prevent post-exercise muscle stiffness, cramping.
Also, men and women alike can take advantage of the plank. However, planks can do a number on your abs, especially if you turn up the intensity level. Widening your stance will also boost the intensity, but if you do this be sure to brace yourself, so you do not lose your balance.