10 abdominal exercises to tone and say goodbye to the belly!
To have a flat stomach you need to do some exercises, at home or in the gym, aimed at stimulating, training and redefining the lower and oblique abdominals first of all. Especially for spring and summer, if you want to face the swimsuit test serenely, our advice is to combine sport or gymnastics with a balanced diet, rich in foods suitable for deflating the belly. If you do not want to join the gym or participate in a program with a trainer, there are many do-it-yourself exercises, you can learn them with our tips and videos.© iStock
Before starting to talk about training, it is good to know that the abdominal muscles, the ones responsible for the appearance of the belly, are four, and that especially for some of these muscles there are specific abdominal exercises for women to do. abdomen is the central muscle, which serves for posture and is responsible for the famous "turtle". The oblique muscles (internal and external) bind the torso to the lower limbs, and help to outline the hips, the lateral parts of the abdomen, giving a precise definition to the abdominals. Another important part is that of the transverse abdomen, a horizontal muscle that contains the organs of the belly, and is the real responsible for the flat stomach, because it functions like a sheath, for example, it is the muscle that comes into action when we pull the belly in.
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You don't have to go to the gym to tone your abs: see what you can do when you are in the office, sitting at your desk ...
The exercises for the upper abdominals
To work on your high abs, try this DIY exercise: get a PVC medicine ball or use a simple chair, lie on your back and rest your legs on the ball or chair. Put your hands behind your head, with your elbows open, and lift your torso and head without bending your neck, but contracting your belly. Rise up as much as possible and exhale in the contraction phase. Return to your starting position and repeat the exercise 30 times.
Try using a support trainer to facilitate movement© iStock
Lower ab exercises for a perfect flat stomach
Lower ab exercises are essential for a flat stomach. They often involve the use of the legs, combined with movements of the torso. The main exercises for the lower abdominals are the bicycle and the scissors.
- The position is always supine, lying on the back: put your hands or fists closed under your butt, and to do the bicycle lift your legs off the ground, starting to pedal in the void.
- Stretch your legs well and "pedal" wide, so as to stimulate the area between the lower abdominals and the thighs.
- To switch instead to scissors, always lying on your back and with your fists under your butt, lift your legs and keep them straight, starting to bend one at a time towards your torso, until the leg forms a 90 degree angle with your body. .
- Then let it go down slowly and continue with the other leg. For both the scissors and the bicycle we recommend you do 10 series 3 consecutive times.
Train your oblique abs with this exercise!
The best exercise for the oblique abdominals involves the use of the medicine ball, often used for disciplines such as yoga and pilates. Rest your back on the ball, bending the knee 90 degrees to the thigh. The arms must remain stretched along the body. Stay leaning on the tool without taking your back off. Try to bring your fingers close to your knees, swinging left and right, first on one side and then on the other. A tip to perform the exercise at its best is to look at the ceiling while performing the movements, in order to maintain the correct posture more easily.© iStock Flat stomach: exercises for the oblique abdominals
A complete exercise for the abs
If you are looking for a complete six pack abs exercise that works all muscle areas at the same time, here it is. Lie on your back keeping your arms on the ground, stretched along your body. Bend your legs and bring your knees up to your chest. Return the lower limbs to the starting position. Doing so will work with your low and high abs at the same time. To vary the exercise, you can cross your legs in the movement, thus also working with the oblique abdominal band.
How to define the hips
Lie on your side with your ranges straight and rest your arm on the ground with the elbow bent. Apply strength to the bent arm and lift your torso and legs, keeping the hand of the other arm on your side. Contract your glutes and abs and hold the position for 20 seconds. Repeat 5 times per side. It is one of the best DIY exercises for working on the oblique abdominals, which define the hips.
Another tip: after the shower, use a toning body cream like that of Somatoline© iStock
Abdominal Exercise Videos
To learn how to do abdominal exercises, there are also our videos. Federica Fontana, a fitness enthusiast, teaches you a complete abdominal program with crunches, climbergs, side plank and abdominal hold. Each exercise, as she tells you herself, is for a different abdominal area. If you can do all four of them, your abdominal training program will be truly complete, and you can have a perfect flat stomach. Check out all the abdominal exercise videos below.
The abdominal crunches
Crunches are the most suitable abdominal pushups to train the rectus abdominis, ie the central muscle. Follow the example you see in the video to start working on the belly to be sculpted. Do the exercise for at least 30 seconds!
The slow climber (the fake climb)
The climber is one of the most strenuous exercises for the abdominals. The video below shows you how: it's a fake climb, to be done not too fast for at least 30 seconds. Always remember to do a proper warm-up with the rope or jumps before starting.
The side plank
Among the less known abdominal exercises there is the lateral plank, which you find in this video. As always, the hold of the movements must be 30 seconds. Performing it is easy, you just need to imitate our fitness instructor Federica Fontana. Side plank works on the oblique abs, helping you to shape your hips well and perfect your flat stomach.
The abdominal tightness
The abdominal hold is the last exercise to do to perfect your abdominal workout. Once you have your flat stomach, you can add this exercise which consists of keeping the abdominal muscles contracted for 30 seconds, as you can see in the video. .
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