So you wanna know about abs, eh? Well you’re in good company…EVERYBODY cares about abs (and for good reason). Having rock hard abs has many benefits:
- First off there are the visual benefits; nothing says “drop dead sexy” like a 6 pack come swimsuit season.
- Secondly there are the psychological benefits, waking up in the morning and seeing a flat stomach can drastically boost somebody’s self-confidence.
- And lastly there are the physical benefits: when your core is strong you are capable of more and less likely to get injured.
Taking the time to do some ab workouts and truly build up your abdominal muscles actually allows you to make progress, not only with ab related workouts, but allows you to progress in all of your workouts, no matter what the focus of the workout is.
Studies show that increasing the strength of your core will simultaneously increase your performance on other exercises. For example, have you ever seen a bodybuilder bench press? If you have, you may have noticed how they flex their stomach to help them keep the bar balanced. If you want an easy test, the next time you do pushups, try relaxing your stomach and see what happens. You won’t be able to keep your back straight and consequently won’t be able to give your arms and chest as good of a workout.
That’s enough jib jabber about why an abs workout is so beneficial, let’s go ahead and dive into some different ab workouts. To start off we’ll talk about the more basic ab exercises and then we’ll talk about some more creative ab exercises.
The Notorious Crunch
We all know it. The crunch consists of laying, stomach up, on the ground with your hands behind your head, legs bent and your heels tucked to your glutes and flexing your stomach to pull your hands, head and upper back off of the ground. This exercise bring decent and steady results, there are some complaints about this exercise bring back pain. Although the exerciser may experience some back or neck pain, it is generally because too the exerciser preformed to many repetitions of the move, or used their neck to lead the crunch instead of their abs.
The All-Famous Sit-up
The next exercise we want to add to our abs workout arsenal is the classic sit-up. To complete a sit-up simply lay on your back, bend your legs to right angles, cross your arms across your chest, then lift your back off of the ground, lifting your upper body until your arms touch your knees. The sit-up also brings good results, but must be done in quick succession in order for the more proficient ab exerciser to really “feel the burn”.
The Partytastic Hollow Body Hold
Prepare yourself, this is going to be like a mouthful of sugar. A hollow body hold is pretty simple to preform. Lay flat on your back to begin. Then lift your legs, upper back and arms off of the ground. If you can handle it, don’t touch your legs with your hands, and don’t place your hand under your hamstrings. The reason why this exercise is like a mouthful of sugar is because…. okay maybe the mouthful of sugar analogy doesn’t really hold true.