Working the Lower Abdominal Muscles

The lower abdominal muscles are normally the most difficult to exercise, as most people tend to do the flat stomach exercises incorrectly, and therefore the upper abs do the majority of the work. For the lower stomach muscles to get an effective work out, any reverse crunches or sit ups must be done properly taking care to only use the stomach to lift the legs, whilst keeping the upper abs relaxed. Lower ab exercises also include the leg lift which is done hanging from a bar.

You will pull your knees up to your chest using only the lower half of your stomach. This should be done slowly and also releases slowly. The force of gravity and your position will cause the lower abs and parts of your oblique muscles to be targeted. For added work to the lower part of your abdominals that connect to your legs (the psoas muscles) you can do these leg lifts slightly twisting your body.

Working the Oblique Abdominal Muscles

The oblique muscles are those that run along the side of your stomach and are normally the ones forgotten during most ab workout routines. The oblique muscles can be tricky to work and you need to incorporate some twisting variations to your other ab exercises, read more on You can do crunches lifting to each leg, do leg lifts focusing your knees to each shoulder instead of straight up, and also twisting from side to side while in the crunch position. This exercise is best done with 2 small medicine balls that you can pick up, drop, and swap as you move from one side to the next. The obliques can also be exercised while standing. The knees should be shoulder width apart, and you should bend from side to side concentrating on only these muscles. This means that you should not lean forward or backwards, and only bend down a short distance (you do not have to touch the floor). To give you additional resistance, you can hold light weights in each hand.

Don’t Forget your Back

Your oblique muscles occur in two areas of the stomach. One set is slightly in front of your body, while the other set is located more towards your back. This is why back exercises are also helpful in getting and maintaining a strong mid section. You can use a decline bench to lift yourself up as you lie on your stomach. Doing this slightly to the side will target the back oblique muscles even more. You can also do this exercise flat on the floor if you are working out at home. Just make sure that you do not lift your shoulders or strain your neck. An inch or two off the ground is all you need. You should hold in this position with your hands stretched out in front of you for a few seconds and then release slowly. As your back gets stronger you can hold this for an even longer period of time. It is very important to strengthen your back at the same time that you exercise your stomach, as they are opposing muscle groups and if one is stronger than the other, it will negatively affect your posture and core stability. It is the same thing as if you work only your biceps and forget about your triceps.

These are the most basic and most effective flat stomach exercises that you can do to start off with. They are guaranteed to have an impact on your work out regime, and will make sure that you get that 6 pack that you have always wanted.