Many times training the abdominals can tend to be overlooked, or many of the exercises can be performed wrong, but today I am going to look into some of the best exercises for training abdominals and the right way to perform them.
Most often people don’t train their abdominals enough and when they do train them they might do the wrong exercises or perform them in the wrong manner, for instance ones that can tend to put too much strain on the lower back or maybe when they perform certain exercises there is too much jerking and twisting in the wrong fashion that can tend to put too much strain on the lower back.
Today’s topic I will be talking about waste training 101 and the best exercises you can perform for your abs and for your obliques and to get the best results in as short of a period as possible.
Too much harm too your lower back
Many people when they train their abdominals they are doing too much harm to their lower back. One of the biggest mistakes that many people make when they train their abdominals is they do sit ups,
Sit ups are hard on the lower back and many times without even realizing it they are creating a wrenching motion on their spine that can cause more harm than any good.
Sit ups have always been a pretty common exercise that have been around for a long time but you will find that their are many other great ways that you can train your abdominals and get great results without taking taking a chance and pulling something.
Many times doing crunches can be a great exercise for the abdominals but quite often when people do crunches they keep their legs extended straight out in front of them and this can cause stress on the lower back when you are crunching forward.
The best way to perform crunches are with your knees bent, this way you are taking the excess stress of your lower back and when you perform the crunches there isn’t that much of a range of motion, so when you perform this short range of motion while your knees are bent it is eliminating much of any excess strain distributed to your spinal column.
Another variation to this exercise is a combination of twist crunches with knee raises as shown in the picture, this variation will work the entire abdominal region as well as the obliques.
Another additional option that you can perform with the crunches is you can use a weight machine, if you have access to weight machine where you can take a seated position and you have a high cable running from overhead, you can do crunches sitting forward holding a short bar at the back of your head when you crunch forward.
For crunches perform 15-25 repetitions or as many as you can do.
Leg raises are great exercise for working abdominals. Generally performed while laying on the floor, you can keep a slight bend in your legs while raising them or when you raise your knees keeping your legs bent this is another great option when performing this exercise.
Another variation to doing the leg raises are the hanging leg raises, when performing the hanging leg raises they are similar to the standard leg raises laying on the floor, there is either two different variations one is bending your knees and the other is keeping your legs straight.
Another little twist that you can add to doing your leg raises is alternating back and forth between reps, you can twist at the waist bringing your knees to the left at the top position for one rep and then bringing your knees to the right at the top of the position in the next rep alternating back and forth.
When you twist your waist alternating back and forth you are training your obliques as well as your abdominals. It is a good idea to try different methods to doing different exercises so that you can get a feel for what works best for you.
For the leg raises shoot for 15-25 repetitions or as many as you can do.
Abdominal rollers are an exceptionally good exercise for training the abs and oblique muscles and strengthen the whole core. With this exercise you can use a specialized wheel made just for the exercise or quite often what I do is I just use a dumbbell with slide on weights so that gives me handles at each end of the dumbbell.
With the abdominal rollers your starting position is on your knees facing down holding the handles of the abdominal roller, you roll forward as far as you can and then return back to starting position. From start position to rolling forwards and back to start counts as one repetition,
If you are alternating from left to right, what I refer to as a cycle, (left, forward and then the right) would count as 3 reps, 7 cycles would be 21 reps.
This is a great exercise for not only working your six pack abdominals but also the obliques. When performing the abdominal rollers, a great way to perform this exercise is alternating between forward and left and to the right, in this manner you are putting emphasis on your obliques as well as your abs.
This can be a tough exercise to perform if you are new to it, as with anything worthwhile takes hard work and patience. At first do as many reps as you can, even if it’s only 2 reps you are making a start.
Side crunches are a great exercise for training obliques, this exercise is similar to the standard crunches except you are laying on your side and you follow a crunching motion raising your shoulders simultaneously as your legs.
To perform this exercise, first lay on your left side keeping your arms crossed, raise your upper torso and your legs at the same time and hold for a second, lower and then repeat, perform this exercise for 15-25 repetitions or as many as you can do.
There are many other exercises out there that do a great job training abdominals but this is just a few that I included in today’s topic, a few of the better ones, so I hope you have taken something good away from this that you can add to your training routine.
When training your abdominals you should try to target them at least three times a week if not four, and when performing abdominals shoot for a rep range of 15 to 25 reps and keep the rest minimal between each set.
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