Getting in shape is just one upside of working your abdominal muscles. It will also stabilize your spine, strengthen your core, and significantly boost your overall flexibility.
If you’re looking to avail of its benefits, this killer 5-minute ab workout will come through.
The Best 5-Minute Ab Workout
When working out your abdominal muscles, focus on your obliques and lower core muscles to get your abs pumping. Avoid over-rotation of the spine to protect your internal organs.
Pair this ab workout with breathing exercises to improve mindfulness. Practice consistency by working out your core muscles a couple of times per week.
Flutter kicks target your core muscles as well as your hip flexors. It improves posture, balance, stability, and flexibility, and defines your ab muscles.
- Lay on your back and place both hands underneath your buttocks.
- Keep your lower back on the ground and lift your right leg off the ground past hip height.
- Next, lift your left leg a few inches off the floor, then hold for 2 seconds. Switch the position of your legs and kick them up and down in a swimming motion. Repeat for 30 seconds.
- For a more challenging workout, lift your head and neck off the floor.
Up-down planks strengthen and tone your core as well as your arm muscles. It also improves posture and helps you lose weight.
- Start in a high plank position, with your shoulders stacked over your wrists and your feet hip-width apart. If this initial position is too difficult, you can place your knees on the ground.
- Bend your left arm and place your left elbow on the mat, lining it up beneath your shoulder. Repeat on the other side, then return to the starting position.
- Keep switching sides and repeat the up and down motion until your set is complete. Rest for 10 to 15 seconds between each pattern.
Hollow Body Hold
This exercise strengthens your glutes, hip flexors, and abdominal muscles. It also keeps your spine in good alignment by flexing your core muscles while maintaining a static position. It also strengthens the stabilizing muscles in your lower back, leading to improved strength and flexibility.
- legs extended and arms over your head.
- Lift your arms and shoulders off the ground.
- Keeping your legs together, raise your legs 2 to 3 inches above the ground, with your toes pointed away from your body. Keep your lower back flat on the floor or mat.
- Raise your head off the ground by 1 to 2 inches. Keep your chin tucked in throughout the exercise and press your lower back into the floor.
- Keep your core engaged and maintain full-body tension.
- Hold for 20 seconds (or as long as you can), then return to a flat position. Rest for 10 seconds and repeat the set.
The bear crawl is one of the simplest exercises you can do to work out most, if not all, muscles in your body. It strengthens your core, improves your shoulder health, engages your entire body, and gives your cardio routine a leg-up.
It also presents a high-level mental challenge, as your brain is engaged in maintaining body stability while moving all of your limbs.
- Start on all flours, with your knees lifted off the ground at a 90-degree angle. Keep your core engaged, arms shoulder-width apart, and legs hip-width apart.
- In a crawling motion, move the right hand and left leg forward at the same time. Make sure your knees do not touch the ground.
- Once you’ve placed weight on your right hand and left leg, switch sides and repeat the crawling motion with your left hand and right leg.
- Crawl a few steps till you achieve the chosen number of steps, distance, or time limit.
This exercise targets the lower back, glutes, and hamstrings. It also strengthens the core, improves core stability, and increases the flexibility of erector spinae muscles. These surround the spine from the head to the hips and straighten and rotate the back.
- Lie down on the floor or mat in a prone position—legs straight, arms outstretched in front of you, and face down.
- Slowly raise your arms and legs until they’re 10 to 15 centimeters above the ground or until you feel your lower back muscles contracting. Keep your neck and back in a neutral position.
- Lift your belly button off the floor and contract your abs.
- Hold the position for 2 to 3 seconds while breathing continuously. This will strengthen your lower back, glutes, and hamstrings.
- Lower your body to get back to the starting position, then repeat the exercise for the desired number of sets.
Before you start this 5-minute ab workout to tone your midsection, it’s a good idea to brush up on the basics of abdominal muscles so you know what to expect from your ab workouts.
Ab Workout: What You Need to Know
1. Ab workouts enhance endurance and strength, but endurance and strength must be paired with a calorie-restricted diet to reduce body fat.
2. Treat your abs the same way you would any other muscles in your workout regimen. To build core strength, switch between different workouts, concentrate on different sections of your abdominal muscles, and give your body plenty of rest in between strength training.
3. Develop strength by focusing on one exercise at a time and doing several repetitions instead of arbitrarily jumping from one workout to the next. You should also ensure that your form and technique for each exercise are correct.
4. Be mindful of your body and the factors that may impact your body shape. Genetic factors and lifestyle habits can both play a role here. So, set reasonable goals for motivation and to avoid damaging your mental health and self-esteem.
To shred your midsection and get in shape, pair this 5-minute ab workout with other healthy strategies, such as incorporating protein in your diet, hydrating regularly, and getting enough zzz’s so you don’t miss out on your body’s muscle recovery process. You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference your lifestyle habits can make in the success of your workout.
Author: Keren Dinkin