CORE WORKOUT (ABS/OBLIQUES) –
Core Muscles are the muscles of your mid section namely the rectus abdominis, transverse abdominis, exterior oblique, internal oblique and the muscles of your pelvic floor, collectively all these muscles are called core muscles.
It is important to workout core muscles regularly as strong core muscles can provide various health benefits like -
• Improve Posture
• Prevent lower back muscle pain and injury
• Helps with better mobility
• Improve physical performance
• Helps in better co ordination and reflexes
Some of the best exercises that you can do to strengthen your core muscles are (video above)-
1. Plank – Plank is one best exercise to work on the deepest layer of the abs called as transverse abdominis, it is these muscles which help to pull your stomach muscles in. It’s an effective exercise to build strength and endurance around abs and back muscles thereby reducing chances of lower back injury. For starters perform 2 Sets x 30 -45 seconds.
2. Side Plank- This is a brilliant exercise to work on your core muscles with major emphasis on external and internal oblique. Strong oblique muscles help with better balance and co ordination and can help enhance sports specific performance in sports like golf,cricket,base ball etc. Side Plank again stick with 2 x 30 -45 seconds each side.
3. Plank Knee To Elbow – Effective exercise to build overall core strength but more than that it’s a great complete body exercise ( video above). By maintaining your body in a push up position you are working on shoulder, back, bicep, tricep, core muscles and when you are moving legs back and forth the muscles of the lower body and lower abs also get involved. Overall it’s a great full body exercise to strengthen core muscles, burn calories and increase speed & agility. Plank knee to elbow you can perform 3 sets X 15 -20 Reps per set.
4. Prone Roll on Swiss Ball – Prone Roll on Swiss Ball is a great exercise to strengthen ab muscles,enhance core stability, increase balance and burn calories. It may look easy at first ( video above) but trust me if you do this exercises 20 times it will get you puffing and panting. This one again try 3 sets X 20 Reps
5. Knee Tucks – Knee Tucks is a challenging exercise and is the toughest among all the exercises mentioned in the video above. Knee tucks on Swiss ball is a complete body exercise and helps strengthen hip flexors, abdominal muscles and the shoulder girdle. In this exercise the arms and torso help stabilize the body while your lower ab muscles get involved when you pull your knees towards the chest. Overall it’s a tough exercise to perform and you can start by trying 2 Sets X 15 -20 Reps.
6. Pelvic Lift – It is one of the easiest exercise to perform but one of the best exercises to strengthen your lower back muscles. Doing this exercise regularly can help prevent lower back pain and injury. Try this exercise for 2 sets x 20 – 25 reps.
All daily activities that you do recruit core muscles and therefore it is essential to workout core muscles regularly.
Contrary to the old belief core exercise do not help get rid of belly fat or get a flat stomach. In order to get rid of belly fat you need to follow a healthy diet and focus on effective strength training exercises which will help enhance metabolic rate and lose belly fat as quickly as possible. In this video my body fat is 9 percent, if you can get it even lower then you can see your six pack abs clearly.
Check out few of transformations where i reduced body fat below 10 % to get six pack abs (Click on the links below) –
Raghav Pande is New Delhi (India) based Fitness Consultant
He is a Certified Fitness Trainer,Sports Nutritionist and the Winner of “You Tube Next Trainer”