In the past, much of the knowledge we have about how our muscles work has been through the study of human cadavers. Fortunately, modern scientists have figured out that the function of the abdominal muscles is to flex the spine.
This is exactly what happens when you crunch your stomach, or any kind of movement wherein you are required to round your lower back. This knowledge discovered by modern scientists led to the popularity of crunches as the best method of working out your abs.
What’s More Important?
In reality, your abs has more important functions than flexing your spine. Its primary purpose is to stabilize your spine not merely to flex it. You might not know it, but the muscles in your midsection are what cause your torso to stay upright, instead of causing it to fall forward due to the force of gravity.
Actually, instead of flexing it, your abs actually prevents your spine from bending. In this regard, if you want more visible results from your abs workout, you need to train it for stability.
Not the Usual Abs Training Plan
These exercises focus on the stabilization of your spine rather than spinal flexion. If you will perform these exercises, you will not be suffering from the usual abs muscle soreness, which are always a part of the traditional core movements.
However, don’t ever think that these muscles are not being worked out. In fact, those who have performed these exercises have experienced rapid abs growth than before. Rest assured that this abs exercises will not only stabilize and strengthen your core but will also cause your abs to pop.
If you want the best result, do these exercises according to the level of your training, at least twice a week. That means, if you are a beginner, stay within your level, but if you are an advanced student, go for the toughest exercises.
Here then are best abs workouts that you might have never done before.
Exercise Number One: Plank on Elbows
Get into a pushup position, with your elbows bent and your weight supported by your forearms. Try to straighten out your whole body, and then brace your abs by imagining that someone is about to strike you in your gut.
Hold this position for 30 seconds. Release and rest for another 30 seconds, and then repeat the cycle.
Exercise Number Two: Mountain Climber with your hands on a bench
Get into a pushup position with your hands on a bench. Restrict your abs and slowly lift your left knee toward your chest. Pause for 2 seconds and then slowly lower your knee to its original position, and slowly lift your right knee toward your chest. Pause for 2 seconds and let it down slowly to its original position. Perform these alternately for 30 seconds and repeat just once.
Exercise Number Three: Side Plank
Lie on your left side and lift your upper body up using your left forearm. Raise your hips until your body is in a straight line from your ankles to your shoulders. Brace your abs and hold for 30 seconds. Release and roll over onto your right side and repeat the movements. Rest for 30 seconds, and repeat the movements one more set.
Exercise Number Four: Elevated-Feet-Plank
Assume a pushup position and bend your elbows and support your weight by your forearms. Put your feet on a bench. Your body should be in a straight form from your shoulders to your ankles.
Restrict your core by contracting your abs as if someone is about to punch you in the gut. Hold for 30 seconds and breathe deeply. Repeat the movements once.
Exercise Number Five: Side Plank with Feet on Bench
Lie on your left side with knees straight. Lift up your body using your left elbow and forearm. Your hips should be raised until your body is in a straight form from your ankles to your shoulders. Hold for 30 seconds, release and go back to your original position. Repeat just once.
Exercise Number Six: Single-Leg Swiss-Ball Jackknife
Get in a pushup position, with your hands on the floor and arms straight. Put your shins on a Swiss ball. Your body should be in a straight line from your head to your ankles.
Roll the Swiss ball toward your chest by pulling it forward with one foot. Lift your opposite leg in the air as the ball is pulled forward. Don’t change the form of your lower back as you do this. Repeat this movement 15 times, and then switch legs. Perform this set just once.