Flaunt your washboard abs at a beach or a pool. This explosive ab workout will help you get ripped, and be the envy of everyone!
The best way to start off is by targeting the core. The core is a complex series of muscles, extending far beyond the abs, including everything besides the arms and legs. The core is engaged in almost every movement of the human body. Athletes need a strong core foundation for powerful movements.

Specific ab exercises are only a small piece of the program. In fact, the best ab exercises for athletes target the entire core, of which the abdominal muscles are a small part. The core is the center of gravity where all movements begin.

Tips for Building an Effective Ab and Core Workout

One of the secrets to getting great abs is frequency. Perform the ab exercises mentioned below, 3–5 times a week. Start with exercises and repetitions that are comfortable for your fitness level and increase the number of repetitions gradually. In order for your body to get the results you strongly desire, it needs to be surprised constantly with new and stimulating exercises. Select those that work well for you and vary your routine over the months.

Here are 12 of the most effective exercises for strengthening and firming the abdominal muscles as well as building core stability.

Bicycle Crunch

This exercise generally ranks at the top of the list of best ab exercises, if done properly. The bicycle crunch is a great exercise for beginners and experts, as the level of difficulty can be modified based on the way you position your body or the rate at which you perform the exercise.

Captain’s Chair Exercise

Another great core exercise done with the help of a common gym equipment, a hanging leg machine. The captain’s chair exercise is one of the most effective exercise for strengthening the obliques, and the second most effective exercise for strengthening the abs.

Ab Crunch on an Exercise Ball

Doing crunches on a stability ball gives your abs a more balanced workout by hitting more muscles that make up the core.

Single Leg Bridge

The single leg bridge exercise is a great way to isolate and strengthen the gluteus (butt) muscles and hamstrings (back of the upper leg).

Vertical Leg Crunch

The vertical leg crunch targets your abs and core. This is a more advanced version of the standard crunch as your legs are elevated making the movement a little more challenging.

Long Arm Crunch

With this stomach exercise, you are keeping your lower body stationary and lifting the upper body. This contracts the rectus abdominus muscles and helps tone your belly.

Reverse Crunch

Unlike regular crunches, which are performed lying on your back with the feet on the floor, reverse crunches are done with legs lifted off the floor. Reverse Crunches offer a more efficient movement, and they can help you get a stronger core.

Plank

The plank is an excellent abdominal and core exercise. It works not only the rectus abdominis, but also the other ab muscles and the core muscles that run from the pelvis along the spine and up to the shoulder girdle.

Crossover Crunch

The crossover crunch is a fantastic beginner ab exercise that works more than your abdominal muscles — it also targets your external obliques and internal obliques, helping you feel more “pulled in” at the waist.

Alternating Superman

This exercise is one of the easiest and most effective ways to improve core strength in the lower back and obliques.

V-Sit Exercise

The V-sit ab exercise builds core strength by working multiple areas of the core at the same time, while also challenging your balance.

Dragon Flag Advanced Core Exercise

Credited to martial arts master, Bruce Lee, the Dragon Flag is arguably one of the more advanced bodyweight exercises. This exercise targets the whole torso, hip flexors, glutes, and lower back.

Finally, it is important to remember that building and keeping great abs and a strong core takes more than these exercises alone. It also takes proper nutrition and a well-rounded fitness routine that combines strength, balance, endurance and power exercises. The best programs are those that provide a comprehensive training routine, a high-quality diet, and plenty of rest and recovery.

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