Welcome to our list of the 6 Best Ab Exercises!
Everyone wants ripped abs, but what are the most effective abdominal exercises to help make it happen? No need to worry our flabby friend, we've got the skinny on ab training. Use our fat loss workouts and these great ab exercises to get going before the summer starts.
Continue reading below to see our handpicked list of the 6 best ab exercises. Need more than 6 for your repertoire? See our abs exercises main page.
Hip raises are our first of the 6 best ab exercises and is a more effective variation to its popular cousin, the hanging leg raise. This belly buster forces your abs to statically contract as you bring your knees parallel to your waist (the hanging leg raise portion of the lift) and dynamically contract as you complete the exercise by further bringing your knees in to your chest.
Throughout the exercise, your forced to stabilize your core as your body weight and hanging legs serve as a natural source of resistance.
Oblique Crunches are a great abs exercise to work your obliques and abdominal muscles.
Our favorite variation is done on an incline bench to add resistance to an already effective abdominal exercise. The Decline Oblique Crunch keeps tension on your abs throughout the lift as you crunch and as you return to the starting position.
Make the exercise easier by Decreasing the incline or lying flat on the ground with your quads and hamstrings raised so they're perpendicular to your back and the floor.
Make the exercise more difficult by increasing the angle of the incline or holding a medicine ball, dumbbell, or weight plate at your chest or behind your head. Behind your head will be the most challenging.
The Bicycle Crunch Exercise is one of our 6 best ab exercises but is also one of the most difficult to get the hang of. It's called "the bicycle crunch" because you lie on the ground and simultaneously kick your right leg forward while bring your left knee towards your chest, then alternating, all while crunching to each side. Lot going on there. Learn this abs exercise by viewing the Bicycle Crunch Exercise page and pedal your way to a tighter core.
We're not the only ones to rank the bicycle crunch highly. Check out the results of this study done by the American Council on Exercise (ACE).
These isometric exercises are great core exercises that force you to keep your abdominals and obliques steady and straight while holding your body weight above the ground. They may seem easy, but each probably tests your core strength and endurance more than any of the best ab exercises.
Our favorite variations to the plank exercise:
Forearm plank with one leg: Lift your forearm and opposite leg off the ground while keeping the other forearm in place or lift one leg and the opposite forearm, hold it for a period of time then switch
The Swiss Ball Jackknife is another great abdominal annihilator. The act of rolling the ball into your chest and flexing at the waist fires on the abs to dynamically contract while your arms, chest, and shoulders have to stay strong to stabilize your body.
The Swiss Ball Crunch or Exercise / Fitness Ball Crunch is another great fitness ball exercise that works your abdominal muscles.
This exercise is a variation of the standard Ab Crunch but the stability ball helps keep your abdominals engaged throughout the lift while you balance yourself.
This is one that seems easy, but we promise you'll feel it. Make the exercise more difficult by holding a weight behind your head or your arms straight behind you.
Add at least a few of them or their variations to your abdominal workouts. Also, make your you check out our other "best exercises" pages:
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