If you are a beginner and want to get ripped abs you need to do two very important things. The first is you need to train your abs the right way and not just throw together a few random ab exercises. The second is you need to get your body fat down low enough to see the results of your hard work, and this happens through a commitment to good nutrition.
In this video, I’m going to show you a perfect ab workout for beginners that will take just 5 minutes to complete. Each of the five movements shown here is to be performed for one minute apiece. If you find that you need to rest at any time, you may do so. The goal is ultimately for you to be able to perform this 5 minute ab workout without needing to stop and rest at all.
The first thing you will notice is that none of the exercises in this ab workout require any equipment at all. I want to be sure that everyone can give this a try. The only thing you will need to have access to is somewhere to hook your feet. As you will see however, you do not want to hook your feet under something to perform your situps, but rather over something so you can pull back and activate your hamstrings.
To begin, lay on the floor with a phone timer or stopwatch nearby. You will start your clock when you begin your first exercise called the laying halos. This is a great lower ab exercise that employs time under tension in the most difficult portion of the exercise (the lift) when your abs are most engaged. Try to perform 30 seconds of this with your feet moving in a clockwise direction and 30 seconds with them moving in a counterclockwise diretion.
Next, you stick with the lower abs but start to incorporate more of the obliques with an exercise called the reverse corkscrew. This involves simply curling your pelvis off the floor and twisting your butt towards the right or left (being sure to alternate on each rep). The twisting of the pelvis engages the obliques, while the lifting of it off the ground is what activates the lower fibers of the abs more directly.
Keep the beginner ab workout going by moving onto what we call our midrange movement. Here you are getting equal activation from the top down as you are from the bottom up. This is a pendulum reach out plank. The idea here is that it takes a boring static plank and adds more difficulty and dynamic movement to it without sacrificing the stability benefit that it provides. Step one foot out to the side and then the other, followed by a reach out in front of your body with one hand and then the other. Continue alternating these steps one after the next for the entire 60 seconds.
Next, we perform a variation of the ab scissor exercise called the chainsaw. This is still involving a fluttering of the legs with them held off the ground to activate the lower abs, but it also employs rotation from the bottom up. The additional rotation will help once again to attack the obliques and turn this into a brutal but effective beginner ab exercise.
Finally, the situp roll ups is a great upper ab exercise that is initiated from the top down. This tends to be a stronger movement than does the lower ab exercise options, which is why it finds itself positioned at the end of the workout when you still have some energy. The key is to hook the feet over and not under something to disengage the hip flexors and activate the hamstrings.
This will have the effect of decreasing the overactivation of the hip flexors which can cause back pain. Also, you want to slowly roll your trunk off the floor once vertebra at a time and paint it back down the same way. This will ensure good eccentric control of the abs and further protetion of the spine.
If you try this and find it effective and are looking for more training that you can do to take your entire body to the next level, please visit the link below and choose the ATHLEAN-X Training System that is best suited to your current goals.
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Jeff Cavaliere M.S.P.T, CSCS
Jeff Cavaliere is a Physical Therapist, Strength Coach and creator of the ATHLEAN-X Training Programs and ATHLEAN-Rx Supplements. He has a Masters in Physical Therapy (MSPT) and has worked as Head Physical Therapist for the New York Mets, as well as training many elite professional athletes in Major League Baseball, NFL, MMA and professional wrestling. His programs produce “next level” achievements in muscle size, strength and performance for professional athletes and anyone looking to build a muscular athletic physique.