Welcome to our Top 10 Ab Workouts at Home (with illustrations!). Abdominal muscles have always been the quintessential token of “being fit”, the focal point on which people fix their forward stares and fitness related goals. And it’s not just a six-pack you’ll get; maintain strong abs, and you’ll help prevent back pain, boost your agility, and increase your flexibility.
In all reality, it takes a lot more than just high reps of many assorted abdominal moves to develop an envy worth set of six pack abs, or even a flat or moderately toned stomach. We previously elaborated on planks here and here and introduced the stomach vacuum. The exercises in this article are based on our comprehensive abs exercises guide where we presented 66 exercises in Part 1 and Part 2. For instructions on how to perform these exercises, please visit those article.
Aside from planks and stomach vacuum, this is our take on the top 10 ab workouts at home (in no particular order) – no equipment required!
Crunches are one of the most common ab exercises. Instructions: Part 1, Exercise #1.
2. Hanging Knee Raise
3. Boat Pose
The benefits of the Boat Pose are numerous: it strengthens the abdomen, hip flexor, and spine supporting muscles; it stimulates your kidneys, the thyroid and prostate glands, and can help you relax and better your digestion. Instructions: Part 1, Exercise #18.
4. Bottoms Up
Bottoms Up is a superb ab exercise, especially for the lower abdominal region. While focusing to reach the ceiling with your feet and maintaining the form, your abs are being worked hard. Instructions: Part 1, Exercise #19.
5. Plank With Hip Extension
As research shows that poor hip activation leads to frontal plane knee collapse, always try to include exercises that activate the glutes. Instructions: Part 1, Exercise #21.
6. Bicycle Crunches
Doing regular crunches all day long can get pretty boring. Bicycle crunches are great to change things up – they also workout your rectus abdominis and obliques pretty hard. Instructions: Part 1, Exercise #25.
7. Indian Push-Ups
Indian push-ups can be a mighty alternative to regular push-ups and work both on muscle building and body flexibility. As you use compound movements (instead of isolation) you work on strength and endurance of many muscle groups. It’s just tough to beat Indian push-ups as far as upper body exercises go (without equipment). You work on your chest, deltoids, triceps, serratus anterior, subscapularis, hip and spine flexors, erector spinae… Instructions: Part 1, Exercise #26.
V-Ups are a great way to work both upper and lower abs at the same time. They can also help strengthen your lower back muscles and thighs. One should be careful to use proper technique with V-Ups however, since wrong execution can lead to back injury. Instructions: Part 2, Exercise #55.
9. Reverse Crunch
Reverse crunches target the bottom part of your rectus abdominus, turning your four-pack into a six-pack (the more you pack the better). Additionally, they train your transverse abdominis, a significant part of the core muscles, more than regular crunches do. Instructions: Part 2, Exercise #57.
10. Sit-Up Reach
While crunches and sit-ups are getting a bad rap lately (like being worthless, or setting you up for injury), there is a time and a place for them as well. If your execution technique is correct they aren’t dangerous and can be easily integrated into your exercise routine. Being done for so long, they have become a part of our culture (they appear in more than 400! action and sports movies). There is also something about the core burn that you feel when doing crunches and sit-ups that makes you feel especially ‘hardcore’, lol. On a more serious note, they are also functional movements that work on core engagement and moving your body in various planes of motion. Instructions: Part 2, Exercise #56.
That was our take on the Top 10 Ab Workouts at Home. Remember, you can find instructions on how to perform each exercise on the link at the end of the exercise. Hope you had fun and please don’t forget to share!