In this blog, we’ll cover 9 ab workouts you can do at home or at your gym. Getting washboard abs is something so many people strive for, but achieving this look is one of the hardest things to do in the gym. It requires a ton of commitment both in the gym and at home. Here, we’re going to focus on the best exercises to do to help give you the six pack you’ve always wanted!
Ab Workouts for Beginners
Are you a complete beginner looking to get in shape? These 9 ab workouts for beginners can help! From crunches to the elbow plank, these exercises are entirely feasible for a beginner who is looking for a new way to get in shape.
Be sure to follow our instructions below – and don’t overdo it! Allow yourself time to get used to each ab workout. As you build endurance, you can repeat each exercise additional times or hold for longer. If you work with a personal trainer, they can help guide you on specifics for your ab workout.
9 Ab Workouts
Ab Workouts at Home
Ready to sculpt your midsection? All nine of these ab workouts are suitable to do in the comfort of your home. To get started, make sure you have plenty of space around you in your living room or kitchen. For your ab workout, we recommend you use a mat. Our ab workouts at home will help improve four major muscle groups in your abs. These include your:
- transverse abdominis,
- rectus abdominis,
- internal obliques, and
- external obliques.
One of the most basic core ab workouts, crunches are a great, simple exercise to work your upper abdominals. Lie with your back flat on the floor and your knees bent. Be sure to keep your feet flat on the floor as well. Put your hands behind your head and lift your upper body upwards until your back is at about a 45° angle. No need to go all the way to your knees.
2) Flutter kicks
Keep lying on your back for this one. Extend your legs outward and keep your feet off the ground. Alternate raising each leg until your legs do a fluttering motion, hence the name. Try doing 3 reps of this for 30 seconds each. This is a good exercise that will work your upper and middle ab muscles.
3) Elbow plank
You’re going to have to turn over for this one. Raise your upper body with your elbows on the ground, keep your butt level and torso parallel to the ground. Extend your legs back with your toes on the ground. Stay as flat as possible and hold this position for 60 seconds. Repeat a couple of times with short breaks in between. This is a vital workout to obtaining that six pack!
4) Side plank
Keep one elbow on the ground and rotate your torso 90°. Your feet should be stacked on top of one another with just one foot on the floor. Take your hand that is opposite of the ground and put it on your hip. You should have your hips raised, too, so the upward slant of your body is as smooth as possible. Like the elbow plank, hold this position for a minute and then do the same on the other side.
For these, you will need to lie back down on your backside. Have your arms stretched back over your hard and your legs straight out in front of you so you are as long as possible. This requires some flexibility so be sure to get loose beforehand! Bend your body at the waist and try to bring your fingertips to your toes in mid-air. This isn’t the easiest exercise on this list, so at least try to get your fingers and toes as close together as possible!
6) Leg raises
These are similar to V-ups but they don’t require any arm work. Just lie flat on your back and raise your feet off the ground while keeping your legs straight. Start with your feet in the “low” position, about six inches off the ground. After five or ten seconds, raise them up another six inches to the “medium” position. Then after another handful of seconds, raise them up once more to the “high” position. Your legs should remain straight at all times. Alternate between these positions for a minute or so before taking a break. This will strengthen your lower core.
7) Sitting twists
Sit with your knees bent and feet off the floor. Your legs should be touching or close to touching. Hold your hands together and twist your torso side to side until your elbow touches the floor. You can hold a medicine ball for extra resistance if you’d like. In this case, you should just go back and forth, tapping the ball into the floor on each of your sides.
8) Cross crunches
Start in the same position as you did for normal crunches. This is almost the same motion but instead of raising your torso straight up, raise it and twist side to side. Your right elbow should move towards your left knee and your left elbow should move toward your right knee. This will work your obliques as well as your main core abs.
Keep you back flat on the floor with your leg stretched out and raised about two feet in the air. Your arms should be stretched out wide and flat on the ground. Keep your feet together and move your legs from side to side This is a great workout for your lower core.
There you have it! Those are nine great ab workouts to help you get the perfect six pack. Remember, it takes more than exercise. Getting abs also requires a healthy, high-protein, low-fat diet.
Ab myths that are probably ruining your progress
Ab Workouts at the Gym
Have a gym pass? Keep in mind that you can also do these ab workouts at the gym and at home. Regardless of where you choose to do your ab workout, and what works best for your schedule, we do encourage you to switch up these exercises to avoid potential overuse injury (by repeatedly doing crunches, for example).
So instead of completing millions of sit-ups and crunches, (which only exercise your rectus abdominus, by the way), you will want to work all four abdominal muscle groups. This means that you should work your muscles with front-to-back, side-to-side, and diagonal ab workouts alike.
Common Ab Workout FAQs
Keep up with our blog for more fitness tips and tricks! Below is a list of common ab workout FAQs for further reading:
What is the best workout for abs?
The only workouts you’ll need for a six pack! Here are the top workout exercises for abs:
- Hardstyle plank. Equipment needed: None
- Dead bug. Equipment needed: None
- Hollow extension-to-cannonball. Equipment needed: None
- Dumbbell side bend. Equipment needed: Single medium-weight dumbbell
- Barbell back squat. Equipment needed: Barbell, don’t use weights
- Bird dog. Equipment needed: None
Can I get a six pack in 30 days?
To get a six pack requires much patience, dedication, and endurance. In addition, you’ll have to maintain a regimented diet. In order to gain a six pack in 30 days, you would have to be already pretty lean. A good rule of thumb and a safe goal is to shoot for losing 1 to 2 percent of body weight each month. Depending on your body fat percentage already, to gain a six pack will average you anywhere from 3 months to 2 years.
What is the most effective core exercise?
The top effective core exercises include the dead bug, side plank, elbow plank, vertical leg crunch, flutter kicks, and side twists. These exercises help the individual to experience a strong lower back and improved balance.