The core muscles of your body need to be strong to perform daily tasks, and your abdominal muscles look great with definition. There are a lot of different exercises you can choose from that target the core of your body, but the five exercises provided here get the job done the best. Sara May Perez of TripleFit guides us through her go-to moves to take your core to the next level.
This workout is meant to be completed in a circuit so move on to the next move after each set, and start the loop all over again when you're done with all 5. Keep the intensity up and do not rest for too long between exercises, but remember form is all-important so feel free to adjust the reps and sets to ensure you are able to perform each exercise safely and with proper form.
1. SkiErg (2 Minutes x 3 Sets)
Tip: In the absence of having the SkiErg machine, you can replicate this movement by doing a Cable Chop. Just attach a rope handle to the low pulley of a cable station and back up far enough away from the machine so that there is tension on the cable.
Benefits: In addition to working your core, specifically your side obliques, skiing is a low impact, high calorie burning exercise that will help you build strength and endurance by working the entire body in an efficient, rhythmic motion.
2. Plank (1 Minute x 3 Sets)
Tip: If you don't have the core strength yet to do a regular plank, you can build up to it by doing a bent-knee plank. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to tougher variations.
Benefits: Let’s just come out and say it: Planks destroy your abs. For a pretty basic isometric exercise, planks strengthen your entire body—they make your core pop, strengthen your lower back, and build your shoulders.
3. Sit Up & Reach (20 Reps x 3 Sets)
Tip: Do not rush the movement, squeeze your core and raise up in a controlled movement before slowly lowering yourself back down. This requires more control but you get more out of each repetition.
Benefit: Sit-ups do a fine job of working both the upper and lower ends of the rectus abdominus. That's the long sheath of muscle that, under the perfect conditions of low body fat, high conditioning and the right genetics, can be transformed into the proverbial six-pack abs.
4. Superman (20 Reps x 3 Sets)
Tip: Your hips and stomach should maintain contact with the floor at all times.
Benefit: The superman exercise is a bodyweight move that targets the posterior core and lower back muscles, strengthening the muscles for postural alignment and improving mobility.
5. Hanging Knee Raises (20 Reps x 3 Sets)
Tip: You must do this exercise slowly. If you want to get the most benefit out of the hanging knee raise, slow it down and avoid swinging your body, keeping your torso as still as possible.
Benefit: Hanging knee raises hits your lower abs. You can hang from literally anything to do this exercise, but the most popular method using hanging from a pull up bar.
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