The abdominal muscles, commonly known as the ab muscles, start at the end of the rib cage and continue till the pelvic muscles. The rectus abdominus muscles are the protector muscles as they shield the vital organs located in the abdomen, namely the stomach, kidneys, and liver.
However, this is the muscle where you will see maximum fat accumulation as well. An abdominal workout which comprises upper and lower ab exercises, and handle exercises, is an ideal workout.
Best Ab Exercises
Along with a strict workout plan, you also should have an appropriate diet. If you neglect your diet, you will find it difficult to achieve your goal.
To do this, lie down on your back with your feet placed closer to your buttocks. Hold the medicine ball with both your hands and extend them above your head. Exhale as you crunch and lift your shoulders and head off the floor. Extend your hands in front of your knees. Hold the position for few seconds and come back to the starting position. Repeat the drill.
Weighted Oblique Crunch
This is a compound exercise which targets oblique and upper ab muscles. Lie on the floor with your feet flat on the floor. Hold one dumbbell with both hands. Lift your head and shoulders off the floor, twist to the right, hold for a few seconds and come back to the starting position. Repeat the same set on the other side.
In this drill, lie on your exercise mat, lift your feet off the floor and bend them at 90 degrees angle. Place your hands on the mat and try to bring your knees as close as you can to your chest. Hold the position for few seconds, release, and repeat the exercise again. This exercise should be repeated in the lower ab workout routine at least 20 times.
For this drill, come down on all your fours. Place your elbow on the ground and curl your toes under. Contract your abdominal muscles and lift your entire body off the floor. Make sure your lower back does not dip. Hold the position for as long as you can. This exercise helps in working the core muscles and also to build core strength.
Designing A Workout
There are three types of sets which are commonly followed. The first technique is doing straight sets. In this, you do an exercise for 1 to 3 sets and then move on to the next exercise. The next is called super set technique. Here, you alternate between two different exercises without any rest between them.
After super sets comes the circuit technique. In this technique, you increase the number of exercises and do them without any resting time between them. It is best to start with straight sets and then move onto super sets before you start with circuit training.
Before you begin, do not forget to perform warm up exercises. At the same time, it is necessary that you include some form of cardiovascular exercises in your schedule. If you have had any injury, it is best to talk to your health care professional before you perform these drills at home.
Disclaimer: Always consult a physician before starting any physical fitness program in order to reduce the risk of injury.