Get those six pack abs with the right abdominal workout equipment
We all know that crunches are an essential part of a core workout, but sometimes, endless sit-ups can get a bit dull. If you want to mix up your routine, skip the latest gimmicky abdominal workout equipment and instead try these variations on the traditional crunch. Not only will you get more variety in your abdominal exercise, by targeting your routine to work your upper, lower and oblique ab muscles, but you'll also get closer to having that well-defined six pack.
Upper Abdominal Workout
Try these exercises to focus on working your upper abs:
- The curl-up. Assume the same position as a sit-up, but keep your arms resting on the floor, slightly away from your body. Slide your hands toward as you raise your torso. For extra intensity, hold your torso upright and pulse your hands toward your feet.
- Decline bench sit-ups. For those who have gym memberships or benches in their home gyms, move your sit-ups into a decline position. Hook your feet under the grips and lean back on the bench. Then, perform a sit-up, squeezing your abs in. For extra intensity, hold your body at a slightly raised angle and pulse for 5 to 10 reps.
Lower Abdominal Workout
We often forget about our lower abs, but these exercises can really help you strengthen them:
- Frog kicks. Sit on the floor or the bench and lean your upper body back slightly. Using your abdominal strength, lift your legs and extend them straight out, then pull them slowly back in. For extra intensity, try lifting your hands off the floor or letting go off the bench so you engage your core muscles for stability.
- Pelvic tilt. Assume a sit-up position, but rather than sitting up, flatten your lower back to the floor. Using your ab muscles, raise your lower torso off the floor. For extra intensity, hold in a raised position or pulse up and down without returning to the resting position.
Oblique Abdominal Workout
The obliques can be difficult to work, so pay close attention to form when doing these moves:
- The bicycle. Assume typical sit-up position, but instead of curling straight up, bring your left elbow and right knee together, followed by your right elbow and your left knee. For extra intensity, extend your leg straight out after you bring it in.
- The oblique crunch. Lay on your side with your legs slightly bent and place your hand on your head with your elbow pointing straight up. Crunch your obliques, raising your torso off the floor and hold for a couple of seconds before lowering.