These five ab moves are better than crunches
- The Plank
To perform a plank, place your forearms on the ground with your elbows aligned below your shoulders, and your arms parallel to your body shoulder-width apart. Squeeze your core and pay attention to keeping your back flat. Focus on pulling your belly button in as you hold the position for two minutes.
- Scissor Kick
To perform a scissor kick, lie with your back on the floor and your arms extended to the sides with your palms facing down. With a slight bend in your knees, lift your legs so that your heels are six inches off the ground. Lift your left leg up to about a 45-degree angle while your right leg is still lowered until your heel is about two-three inches from the ground. Switch movements by raising your right leg while lowering your left leg. Squeeze your midsection and focus on your breathing as you perform 60-90 seconds of the exercise.
To perform a V-Up, lie down on your back on the floor and extend your arms behind your head. The back of your hands should lightly touch the floor while your palms face the ceiling. Keep your feet close together and point your toes toward the ceiling. Lift your legs, keeping them straight while you raise your upper body off the floor and reach for your toes. Exhale and squeeze your abdominal muscles as you reach for your toes before slowly lowering yourself back down to the starting position. Repeat a series of 12-20 repetitions.
- Reverse Crunch
To perform a reverse crunch, lie on the floor with your feet flat on the floor and hands behind your head. Press your lower back toward the floor and pull in your belly button as you lift your feet off the floor. Keep your knees bent at a 90-degree angle and pull toward your chest so that your tailbone raises off the ground, and at the same time lift your shoulder blades off the floor. Focus on squeezing your abs to perform the movement. Slowly lower your shoulders, hips and legs to the starting position, keeping your feet just above the floor. Repeat the movement for 12-20 repetitions while squeezing your abs and focusing on your breathing.
- Russian Twist
To perform a Russian twist, lie on the floor with your knees bent at a 90-degree angle while raising your upper body off the ground. Exhale while you twist your torso to the right side until your arms are parallel with the floor. Pull your belly button in and squeeze, then slowly move back to the starting position. Repeat on the left side and continue to repeat both sides for 60-90 seconds.
For the entire article, read the January/February 2018 issue of ONYX Magazine.