[BodyZine ] [Fitness] [Health] [Muscle Building] [Fat Loss] [Food] [Sports] [Links]

FREE Weight Lifting Workouts
Try This Amazing New Program That
Builds Muscle and Burns Fat Fast!

Enter your first name and a valid email address
for instant access to the free workout programs.



5 Ab Exercises that are Better Than Crunches

By: John Barban

Crunches are an overused and under productive exercise. They present a considerable risk to the health of your lower back and spine and only work a limited range of your core muscles. They never have and never will burn fat off of our 'stomach' or midsection and if you do enough of them will simply cause you to grow bigger and stronger abs muscles without working your lower back and oblique muscles. Doing excessive amounts of crunches could very well lead to imbalanced abs and core development as well as potential lower back and spine pain and problems. Here are 5 exercises that work your abs and core in better, safer and more balanced positions than any crunch can.

1. Stability Ball Roll Outs: Kneeling on the ground in an upright position with your elbows on a stability ball. Roll the ball out in front of you extending your body and arms as far as you can go. Keep your back, spine, and body from your shoulders to your knees straight like a board or plank. Hold the extended position for a second or two. Pull yourself back to the starting position

This exercise works your abs, lower back and core all at once. You can keep your spine straight and stable throughout the whole exercise which makes this very safe for your spine and lower back.

2. Planks: Lie face down on the ground Get up into a push up position resting on your feet and hands (you can also rest on your elbows instead of your hands.) Hold this position for a timed interval keeping your spine and body straight like a board or plank. Start with a manageable time like 30 seconds working up to 60-70 seconds as you get better at them.

This exercise works all the muscles of our core and keeps your spine stable and straight.

3. Side Planks: Lying on the ground on your side. Stabilize your body on one hand (or elbow) and your feet. Keep your body rigid and straight like a board or plank. Hold this position for a timed interval. Switch and do the other side in the exact same fashion

This exercise will work your oblique (side abs muscles) harder as well as working your abdominal muscles and lower back muscles. This exercise also allows for you to keep your spine straight and keeps your back safe from injury.

4. Mountain Climbers: In a push up position. Bend one leg bringing the knee up to your chest (you can also touch your opposite elbow to that knee for added work.) Alternate each leg and arm in a climbing type of motion. Keep your back straight throughout the movement.

This is an advanced exercise that works the core muscles similar to a plank with the added work of moving your legs and arms.

5. Stability Ball Pikes: In a push up position with your feet on a stability ball Keeping your back and legs straight no bending at the knees pull the ball toward your body. You should end up in a pike position with your hands on the floor your butt elevated in the air, bending at the waist only, knees straight. Slowly roll the ball back to the starting position

This exercises also works all the muscles of your core without putting your lower back in a compromised position.

These are just a few examples of ways to work your 'core' and abs without ever doing a crunch. Each one of these exercises works all the muscles of your core in a more balanced way than a crunch and also allows you to keep your spine and lower back in a safer position.

John Barban is a professional strength and conditioning coach and nutrition expert. He has extensive experience designing nutritional supplements and has developed his trademark workout for women 6 Minute Circuits. John is an expert contributor to http://www.efit-today.com/public/department59.cfm and recomends the diet program http://www.eatstopeat.com , and believes it is the best new diet for easy and effective weight loss.

Click Here For Your Free Fitness Magazine Subscription

[BodyZine ] [Fitness] [Health] [Muscle Building] [Fat Loss] [Food] [Sports] [Links]

Copyright © 2000-2016 by BodyZine.com. All Rights Reserved.


All information contained at BodyZine.com is for informational purposes only. Consult a physician before taking and supplements or starting any diet or training program. We do not assume liability for the practice of the data included in this site. By reading the site, you release the owners of the site and authors of articles from any liability that may occur.