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Abdominal Exercise

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Abdominal Exercise
This article is a must-read for all those seeking a flat stomach or a six-pack abdomen. Everything you wanted to know about abdominal exercises, postpartum ab exercise and getting rid of unsightly love handles.

There is no dearth of gizmos and gadgets targeted towards the abdominal muscles. Abdominal exercise routine can help you train your abs to their limits. Your dream body of a flat and trim abdomen is within your reach. Shape up your body with lower abdomen exercise. Get rid of your love handles with exercise. Here's how!


Abdominal exercise

Any good abs exercise program involves high intensity muscular overload and progressive increase in intensity. Abdominal exercises must be undertaken carefully so that the back is adequately supported. The upper and lower abdominal muscles are not separate muscles and abs exercises can help strengthen the entire abdominal region.

But some exercises will tend towards developing either the upper or lower abdominal region. Abdominal exercises can help you also gain strong stomach muscles and back muscles. This can reduce the likelihood of back pains and provide protection against injury by efficient response to stress.


Let us examine the muscles in the abdominal region. The Rectus abdominis is the muscle that stretches down the stomach from your ribs to the hips. The external and internal obliques run down the sides of the waist. They aid the rectus abdominis during curling and twisting exercises. Ab exercises need to tone or harden the muscles in that area.

In addition, the body fat covering the abdominal muscles must be eliminated. That can only be achieved with a proper eating plan. Increasing protein intake and limiting carbohydrates is said to be one way of tackling flabby abs along with a sensible abs exercise routine and strength training.


Ab exercise

Ab exercise must be followed religiously and is all about frequency rather than intensity. No exercise must be continued if it leads to pain or extreme discomfort. The best ab exercise program can also help you achieve a flat and tight stomach. Many an abs exercise is performed on the floor. Abdominal muscles will react to resistance training like bicep curls and crunches.

A simple 'pelvic tilt' performed while sitting in a chair can strengthen your ab muscles and support the back.

Crunch: Lying on your back and knees bent; lift your shoulders off the floor. The emphasis is on moving the ribs towards the hips.


Reverse Curl : Lying on your back, bend your knees towards the chest. Keep the hips on the floor. Contract your abdominal muscles at the same time. Your lower abdominal exercise program must include reverse curls.

Leg raise: Single leg raise involves raising one leg from the floor. The double leg raise involves raising both legs from the floor at the same time and this works as an abdominal muscle exercise. Lying leg raises are ideal lower abdominal exercise

Ab exercise with the ball: The stability ball is an effective training device for the abs and lower back. Due to the curve of the exercise ball, the lower abdominal muscles get trained better on account of the greater range of motion.

Bicycle: It was ranked the best abdominal exercise by the American Council on Exercise. When performed with the abs muscles pulled, this exercise does great things for you.

Plank : For this exercise program, you need to position yourself for a pushup and hold the pose. Ensure that your body is in one long, straight line from head to toes.

Captain's chair: This abs exercise involves standing on a gym chair and gripping the handholds. Press your back against the head pad and slowly lift your knees towards your chest. The back must remain straight.


Postnatal abdominal exercise

Most women are eager to get back to shape after pregnancy and childbirth. Women must consult their doctor before embarking on a postnatal abdominal exercise program. Pelvic tilts and simple ab contractions are an ideal way to embark on a postnatal lower abdomen exercise program.

Combined with Kegels' exercise, you can get your pelvic floor muscles back in shape. Isometric contractions can even be practiced with the baby on your stomach. Stick to a steady lower ab exercise program and watch the flabby skin harden.


Stomach exercise

The elusive washboard flat stomach eludes most of us. Millions of dollars are spent in the quest for a flat stomach and slim waistline. There are many exercise machines that are sold to those seeking an exercise program for cutting down the adipose on the waistline. The first step towards a trim waist and flat stomach is to remove the fat that sits on the abs.

A combination of cardiovascular exercise program coupled with a healthy diet aimed at preventing fat can do wonders. Stomach exercise program would include the following:


  • Forward flexion exercises such as sit-ups and crunches.

  • Side flexion exercises such as side crunches and side bends

  • Rotational exercises such as trunk rotations and standing twists

Exercise for love handle

Love handles are a misnomer, as all women would love to shun them. Love handles are the unsightly fat belts around the waist. This lump of flesh starts at the side of the bra-line and extends all the way down the back. Aerobic exercise aimed at this region can help you shed the unsightly roll of flesh.


Exercise for love handles involve exercising the oblique muscles to tighten up the sides of the waist. Ab crunches would help too. A simple home exercise for love handles - Sit upright with a stick across the back of your shoulders. Twist from side to side. Side bends also work wonders on love handles. Keep at it and watch these muscles firm into place.


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