Everyone wants a nice flat tummy, Abs undoubtedly one of the most popular parts of the body to exercise. To learn how to train abs properly, there are a few things we need to be aware of.
1. The abdominal muscles cannot fully contract with air in the lungs. To correct this, you must not hold your breath while performing ab exercises. It’s important to exhale upon engagement.
2. Unlike other muscles in the body, abs recover quicker between sets and respond best to continuous movement working all angles of the trunk until complete exhaustion.
3. You cannot spot reduce. So performing 500 crunches a day will certainly not trim the waistline. Only decreasing overall body fat will do that. Ab exercises will however help to tone and strengthen the muscles of the core. Once body fat percentage lowers, you will be able to see a nice outlining of the abs.
The abdominal muscles support the trunk, allow movement and hold organs in place. Having a strong core creates a foundation for all activities. All our movements are powered by the torso.
The four main muscle groups that make up the ab family are:
- Transverse abdominis – A layer that wraps around like a belt, which is also the deepest layer.
- Rectus Abdominis – commonly known as ‘the six pack’.
- External Oblique muscles- located on each side of rectus abdominis. ‘the waist ‘ These muscles allow the body to twist and flex laterally (side bend)
- Internal Oblique Muscles –are located just inside the hipbones and also assist in twisting the trunk.