What is the best core exercise to do? Situps, crunches, leg lifts, those things you bend that funny way?
What about that funny machine at the gym that I see people do?
How about those machines that shock me, I mean stimulate my abs to make them stronger and look better? How about use it and go on a date?
How about the thing you put over your stomach for a bit and it leaves an impression on your stomach looking like you have a six pack?
All of these are might just work and get you results, but the real question is what kind of results are you really looking to get. Do you want to know what the real answer is?
As a personal trainer we ask our clients what they really are looking for. Most of the times it is I want a more firm stomach. So if that is the case then doing all those sit ups and crunches may actually not get you there. When you are doing those movements, you are strengthening the muscles for blunt impact. That is why you see athletes, fighters, etc have them. Because there is a potential for them to get hit in the stomach so they have to protect against that.
The exercise that will help tighten your stomach and make it feel more firm is planks. What planks strengthen are your internal abdominal muscles. These muscles are like an internal weight belt. So if you can tighten these muscles, your internal abdominal muscles will tighten up and pull your stomach in. Personal trainers have been able to see inches come off at weigh in and clients are shocked that they have lost 2 inches in a month, with little to no change in nutrition and moderate intensity exercises. So the next time you think about tightening your stomach start with planks. Here is a easy 4 stage progression from easiest to hardest.
Let us (your personal trainer) know if you have any questions on how to do these, or sign up for a free consultation.