December 19

18 Best Ab Exercises For Women (Video)

By fitness

December 19, 2022




Planks, indirect crunches, useless bugs, and v-ups – these are the 18 finest ab workouts for girls. This ab exercise for girls contains 9 newbie ab workouts and 9 superior core workouts that can sculpt and strengthen your mid-section from each angle.

Building robust abs is greater than cranking out crunches.

To sculpt a stronger, extra outlined core, it's good to functionally prepare the muscle groups that criss-cross across the trunk of your physique.

The finest ab exercises for girls incorporate workouts that fireside up all of those main muscle groups within the core. Particularly workouts that work a number of ab muscle groups on the similar time (like planks, useless bugs, and bear crawl variations).

If you need outlined ab muscle groups, you need to prepare your abs from each angle.

Bonus: the advantages of strengthening your abs go far past aesthetics.

A powerful core: 

  • Prevents harm
  • Reduces decrease again ache
  • Improves posture
  • Provides stability to on a regular basis actions and actions.
Why Is A Strong Core Important?

A powerful core is necessary for thus many causes. According to Mayo Clinic, a powerful core is tied to improved stability and stability, improved posture, decreased danger of decrease again ache, and decreased danger of accidents (particularly from actions that contain core rotation).

What Muscles Make Up The Core?

There are over 24 muscle groups between your hips and shoulders that make up “the core”. Some of essentially the most outstanding core muscle groups embody the transverse abdominis (deep core muscle groups, generally known as the “corset” of the physique), inner and exterior obliques (muscle groups alongside the aspect of your core), rectus abdominis (the “six-pack” ab muscle groups) and multifidus and erector spinae (necessary stabilizing muscle groups positioned alongside the backbone).

What Are The Most Effective Ab Exercises For Women?

Planks, bear crawls and useless dugs. These workouts hit all elements of the core and prepare the abs to stabilize the trunk of the physique. The bicycle crunch is one other one of the vital efficient ab workouts based on this examine executed by the American Council on Exercise. 

How Many Times A Week Should A Woman Do Abs?

Add focused ab and core exercises to your health routine 1-3 instances per week for the very best outcomes. For a extra structured exercise program, attempt following certainly one of my free residence exercise plans.

Improve core power at residence with these ab workouts: newbie to superior.

I recommend including this 10-minute ab exercise to your health routine 1-3 instances per week to strengthen your core muscle groups.

Workout Equipment:

Option so as to add a medium set of dumbbells for transfer 8 (useless bug train). Otherwise simply your body weight.

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Workout Instructions:

Follow together with the guided Ab Workout for Women on YouTube, led by licensed private coach, Lindsey Bomgren. 

Your Workout Looks Like This:

  • 9 Ab Exercises (18 in complete; 9 newbie and 9 superior variations of every train)
  • Timed Intervals (40 seconds work, 20 seconds relaxation)
  • No Repeats

5 Best Ab Exercises For Women (Beginner and Advanced Options!)

Workout Outline

  1. Plank
  2. Side Plank
  3. Alternating Leg Lowers
  4. Side-To-Side Leg Lowers
  5. Boat Pose
  6. Oblique V-Up Crunch
  7. Bicycle Crunch
  8. Dead Bug
  9. Bear Crawl

9 Best Ab Exercises For Women

Plank

Targets: Transverse abdominals, higher abs, decrease abs and shoulders.

Beginner (Incline Plank) / Advanced (High Plank)

two women performing different plank variations as part of 18 best ab exercises for women workout

How To Do A Plank:

  1. Start in a desk prime place with shoulders stacked over wrists (delicate bend within the elbows) and hips over knees. Hand are planted firmly on the mat, weight evenly distributed between all ten fingers.
  2. Then step each toes again and lengthen legs lengthy, balancing in your toes. Pull up in your kneecaps and push again in your heels to maintain your core engaged.
  3. Hold this plank place, sustaining a straight line together with your physique, gaze barely in entrance of you.

Modification: Place your arms on a raised floor (resembling a chair, sofa, or countertop).

Side Plank

Targets: Internal and exterior indirect muscle groups (the muscle groups that run alongside the aspect of your core) and transverse abdominus.

Beginner (Knee-Down Side Plank) / Advanced (Side Plank)

two women performing a side plank exercise

How To Do A Side Plank

  1. Start mendacity in your aspect, proper forearm on the mat, proper shoulder stacked over proper elbow.
  2. Press into your forearm and elevate your hips. Balance on the surface fringe of your proper foot, stacking your left foot on prime of your proper foot. Option to stagger your toes if stacked isn’t comfy.
  3. Place your left hand behind your head or lengthen your left hand overhead. Focus on retaining your hips excessive and even (stacked over one another).

Modification: Drop the within knee to the bottom relatively than extending each legs.

Alternating Leg Lowers

Targets: Rectus abdominis, transverse abs, and decrease abs.

Beginner (Bent Leg Lowers) / Advanced (Straight Leg Lowers)

two women lying on their backs performing alternating leg lowers as part of ab workout for women

How To Do Alternating Leg Lowers:

  1. Start mendacity in your again. Press your low again firmly into the mat and take into consideration “wrapping” your belly wall round your core.
  2. Straighten your legs and lengthen them over your hips, the underside of your toes dealing with the ceiling.
  3. Slowly decrease one leg in direction of the bottom, retaining each legs as straight as potential. Focus on retaining your decrease again pressed into the mat.
  4. Hover your heel above the mat, then pull it again as much as beginning place.
  5. Then repeat, this time alternating legs.

Modification: Bend each knees, shortening the space every leg travels.

Side-To-Side Leg Lowers

Targets: Internal and exterior indirect muscle groups (the muscle groups that run alongside the aspect of your core), rectus abdominis, and transverse abdominus.

Beginner (Bent Knee Lowers) / Advanced (Straight Leg Lowers)

two women performing side to side leg lowers as part of best ab exercises workout

How To Do Side-To-Side Leg Lowers

  1. Start mendacity in your again, decrease again pressed into the mat and core engaged.
  2. Straighten your legs “up the wall” or stacked on prime of your hips. Legs are prolonged lengthy, toes flexed in direction of your face.
  3. Slowly decrease each legs in direction of the bottom on the best aspect of the physique. Keep each legs as straight as potential whereas retaining your left shoulder related to the mat.
  4. With management, pull the legs again to beginning place and repeat on the left aspect of the physique.

Modification: Perform this train with knees bent, shortening the space every leg travels.

Boat Pose

Targets: Rectus abdominis and transverse abs.

Beginner (Assisted Boat Pose) / Advanced (Advanced Boat Pose)

beginner and advanced boat pose options

How To Do Boat Pose:

  1. Start sitting on the ground together with your legs bent at 90 levels. Lean again barely sitting in your sit bones (two sitting bones and tailbone), retaining a pleasant lengthy backbone, shoulders down and again.
  2. Place your arms behind your knees and elevate your toes off the bottom. Bent legs are prolonged out in entrance of you.
  3. Slowly straighten your legs out in entrance of you. Raise the ideas of your toes to eye-level or simply larger. Option to increase your arms in direction of your toes as nicely.

Modification: Keep your arms on the again of your thighs, holding your legs throughout this pose to scale back the depth.

Oblique Crunch

Targets: Internal and exterior indirect muscle groups (the muscle groups that run alongside the aspect of your core) and transverse abdominus.

Beginner (Oblique Crunch) / Advanced (Oblique V-Up)

oblique crunch to target sides of core

How To Do An Oblique Crunch

  1. Start mendacity in your aspect, proper arm on the mat, left hand behind your head. Extend each legs lengthy, toes stacked on prime of each other. Brace your core.
  2. Lift your head, neck and shoulders off the bottom whereas additionally lifting your legs up off the mat. Keep each legs straight as you elevate them, forming a “V” form together with your physique. Think about bringing your left elbow to fulfill your left knee.
  3. Slowly decrease again right down to the beginning place.

Modification: Keep each legs on the bottom for your complete motion, knees bent and toes collectively. Squeeze the core, and crunch by means of the aspect of your physique to lift your head, neck and shoulders off the mat.

Bicycle Crunch

Targets: Rectus abdominis, transverse belly muscle groups and obliques

Beginner (Bent Knee Bicycle Crunch) / Advanced (Bicycle Crunch)

two women performing bicycle crunches as part of ab workout at home

How To Do A Bicycle Crunch:

  1. Start mendacity flat in your again, decrease again urgent firmly into the mat. Bring your legs to a raised 90 diploma bend.
  2. Lift your head, neck and shoulders off the bottom. Place your arms behind your head and take into consideration urgent your head into your fingertips. 
  3. Lift your proper elbow in direction of your left knee as you lengthen your proper leg lengthy.
  4. Slowly return to the beginning place and repeat on the opposite aspect. Pulling your left elbow in direction of your proper knee as you lengthen your left leg lengthy.
  5. Continue to repeat this ‘bicycling’ motion, alternating knee to elbow crunches.

Modification: Perform with knees bent, decreasing the vary of movement.

Dead Bug

Targets: Deep core muscle groups (transverse abdominis), decrease belly muscle groups, hips, shoulders and again (posterior and anterior deltoids).

Beginner (Dead Bug) / Advanced (Weighted Dead Bug)

two women demonstrating dead bug exercise with weights

How To Do A Dead Bug

  1. Lie in your again flat on the ground, performing a slight pelvic tilt to press your decrease again into the mat. Lift your knees to type a 90-degree angle (knees stacked on prime of hips).
  2. Hold a dumbbell in every hand and lengthen your arms straight overhead towards the ceiling. Inhale, letting your stomach increase.
  3. Exhale, participating your core. Extend your left leg and proper arm away out of your physique, reducing the dumbbell in your proper arm in direction of the bottom with management. Left arm and proper leg stay in place. With management, inhale as you come to heart.
  4. Then repeat on the alternative aspect. Exhale as you lengthen your proper leg and left arm away from the physique, reducing the dumbbell in your left arm in direction of the bottom. With management, return to beginning place.

Modification: Perform with simply your body weight as an alternative of including a dumbbell. Option to scale back vary of movement of your legs, performing useless dugs with knees bent as an alternative of straight leg useless bugs.

Bear Crawl

Targets: Deep transverse stomach muscle groups, rectus abdominis (six-pack ab muscle groups), indirect muscle groups, shoulders, again, legs, glutes and quads.

Beginner (Bear Crawl Hold) / Advanced (Bear Crawl and Arm Extension)

two women demonstrating how to perform a bear crawl exercise

How To Do A Bear Crawl:

  1. Start in a desk prime place, quadruped on all fours, shoulders stacked over wrists and hips stacked over knees, pelvis even.
  2. Inhale as you let your stomach barely drop, elevating your gaze up as you breathe by means of into your stomach.
  3. Exhale, drawing your stomach button in direction of your backbone. Tuck your toes underneath and elevate your knees one inch off the mat, discovering a bear crawl.
  4. Hold this bear crawl place, then lengthen your proper arm straight overhead, reaching out away out of your physique.
  5. Return your proper palm to the mat and repeat on the opposite aspect. Extending your left hand away from the physique after which returning it to the mat.
  6. Continue this sample, alternating which hand is prolonged.

Modification: Hold a bear crawl for the timed interval.

two women performing a bear crawl to strengthen core muscles

Ab Workouts For Women: Trainer Tips and Tricks

Start with the newbie model, and scale as much as extra superior variations once you really feel prepared. For reference, listed here are the very best newbie ab workouts and superior ab workouts:

9 Beginner Ab Exercises

  1. Incline Plank
  2. Knee Down Side Plank
  3. Bent Knee Leg Lowers
  4. Bent Knee Side-to-Side Leg Lowers
  5. Assisted Boat Pose
  6. Side Oblique Crunch
  7. Bent Knee Bicycle March
  8. Dead Bug
  9. Bear Crawl Hold

9 Advanced Ab Exercises

  1. High Plank
  2. Side Plank
  3. Alternating Leg Lowers
  4. Side-to-Side Leg Lowers
  5. Advanced Boat Pose
  6. Oblique V-Up Crunch
  7. Bicycle Crunch
  8. Weighted Dead Bug
  9. Bear Crawl with Arm Extension
two women lying on their backs extending their arms and legs away from the body as part of a dead bug exercise to strengthen abs

How To Engage Your Core During Ab Workouts

These are some widespread health teacher cues designed that will help you safely carry out core workouts:

  • Pull your stomach button in direction of your backbone. Your stomach button is related to your deepest ab muscle groups, which you need ‘pulled in’ when performing ab workouts.
  • When performing a mat ab train, press your decrease again into the ground. This prompts your core muscle groups and protects your again from harm or pressure.
  • Imagine there's a string between your hip bones. As you exhale, think about that string (or your TA muscle groups) are pulling your hip bones collectively.

How To Avoid Neck Pain During Ab Workouts

  • Avoid “pulling” in your neck. Any time your arms are behind your head, take into consideration urgent your head into your fingertips, relatively than utilizing your arms to “pull up” in your head.
  • Imagine there’s a tennis ball tucked beneath your chin. This creates area between your chin and your chest and avoids further neck pressure.
  • Take modifications. Neck ache could be a signal your core isn’t fairly robust sufficient to finish the train you’re making an attempt.

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