Fitness

Best Ab Workouts for Women – Upper, Lower & Side Abs

Regular and effective training of the anterior, lateral and posterior abdominal muscles strengthens the middle, forms a beautiful waist and creates the coveted reef look.

There is a new beauty trend among women to have perfect abs. Modern stylish girls follow around the world as women with abs look gorgeous. Regular and effective training of the anterior, lateral and posterior abdominal muscles strengthens the middle, forms a beautiful waist and creates the coveted reef look. In the long run, that does not just make a difference visually. Ab workouts is also recommended for health reasons. Schumacher confirms strong abdominal muscles. That’s why women should train their abdominal muscles

What are the benefits of training ab muscles? 

  • Strengthen the back and prevent back pain.
  • Stabilize and relieve the spine and thereby improve posture.
  • Relieve the joints.
  • Make generally more stable and more efficient in everyday life.
  • Quality posture.
  • Build better functional strength.
  • Improved sports performance.
  • Better body balance.
  • Overall good body look.

Best Ab Workouts for Women

Now in the following section, we will show you different types of training for abs for Home as well as for Gym:

Ab Workouts at Home

1. For Upper Abs:

– Pike:

This is one of the most effective yet challenging upper ab exercises. Start with a plank position and keep feet hip-width apart. Ensure to keep the body in a straight line from the shoulders to ankles. Tight your abs and raise your hips in the air as high as you can. Take a pause for a moment at the top and then bring it down.

Plank Pikes
– Crunch:

Crunch is also one of the best upper ab workouts which are effective for your upper middle. Lie down on the floor with your hands behind your ears and then behind your head to counteract neck tension. 

Bend your knees on the floor with your feet. Then lift your shoulders and spine up and away into the ground. Exhale when you come up as far as possible, hold to get a second, then inhale when you return to the starting position. Repeat 15-25 times.

Crunch

– Crunch and twist:

This exercise works best. Start with the same position as these exercises but slowly lift and turn your system off the waist (not back and shoulders). Try to touch your left knee with your right elbow, unravel and check the starting position. Next time you make the opponent’s side and try to touch your right knee with your left elbow. Do it 10-15 times.

Twisting crunch

– Pilates Hundreds:

With these Pilates Hundreds exercises, especially the deep-seated muscles are steeled which is otherwise forgotten. Those who do the following exercises on at least three days a week will soon see first successes, especially if at the same time sugar and white flour foods are reduced.

For the exercises to work well, the abdomen should be tight during exercise. The exercises should also be done slowly and wisely.

Relax on the back. The arms are stretched out beside the body, the legs are slightly compressed. Firmly tense the belly.

Ab workouts for women - Pilates hundreds
Pilates hundred – photo by complete-pilates.co.uk

– Curl ups:

Lie down on your back with the crossed arms on your chest. Keep your knees slightly bent. And then raise your upper body off the ground by flexing your abdominal muscles. Touch your elbows to your thighs and repeat this.

Official Navy PRT Curl-up Demonstration

2. Lower Abs:

– Leg Raise:

Leg raises is the best exercise for lower abs. Lower abdominal muscles are mainly trained by leg lifting in the slope, in support or while lying down. This part of the abdomen is a problem zone for many people.

Whether you want to get leaner or aim for a six-pack, lower abdominal muscles should be an important muscle group in your abdominal training.

Unlike upper abdominal training, lower abdominal training requires lifting of the legs. The upper body remains mostly fixed. For this purpose, different variants of the leg lift offered.

Leg Raise lower ab exercise
– Hip Lift:

You lie on your back and raise your legs hip-width. Your arms are very loose next to your body, the palms press against the ground.

Now lift your hips until your thighs and back are straight. Keep it short and lower your hips again when inhaling. Important: The hips must not touch the ground.

Best ab workouts - hip lift
Hip Lift
– Double Crunch:

For the reverse crunches, you do not need any training equipment except for a soft ground, which can be practiced almost everywhere. It is also considered as quick ab workout.

In this abdominal exercise, the upper and lower parts of the rectus abdominal muscles are trained to the same extent, as it causes both a curvature of the upper body and a tightening of the knees in the direction of the upper body. Those who master the classic crunch can easily learn this exercise.

Double Crunch – best ad workouts

3. Side abs:

– Side Plank

This one is the best side ab workouts. When Side Plank is trained with the own body weight, it makes lateral abdominal muscles. This forms a slim waist and can help with back pain because the exercises also contribute very well to core stability.

No matter which variant: Knee, hips, back, and shoulders form a line. The head is aligned in the extension of the spine. The belly should be as tight as possible. And: mobilize your back before training.

Side Plank is the intense ab workout. Lie on your side and stack ankles and knees on top of each other. Shift your body weight over to the one side and prop yourself up with your hand. Rest at your waist or reach up to the ceiling.

Side Plank - A-Lifestyle

– Seated Russian Twist:

You can include seated Russian Twist in your abs workout routine. This exercise can be done without any equipment, although at more advanced levels a weight or load is used for its execution that can be a disc or, as is usually the case in Crossfit, a kettlebell or a medicine ball.

To begin with the movement we will sit on the floor or a mat and lean the torso back to position it at an angle of 45 degrees. Then, we will flex the knees and take off the feet from the floor to keep the buttocks as the only support of the body.

– Twisting Side Plank:

This is another version of the side plate with greater difficulty, this time you will bring the knee of the lower leg to the opposite elbow, in addition to the extra effort produced by the movement is also an extra challenge for balance.

You may also be interested: At Home Workout Plan without Equipment

Ab Workouts at the Gym

1. Upper abs:

– Dumbbell crunch:

Dumbbell Crunch is the best oblique exercises. Crunches may be effective while you practice it varying planes of motion, angles, and positions will result in greater benefit to your core.

To gain a stronger core, compound movements such as squats and deadlifts, when done correctly, will strengthen your abdomen and core. A simple exercise that is great for ribbed abs. 

Dumbbell crunch - A-Lifestyle
– Tuck and crunch:

A reverse crunch is a great alternative. Start by lying on your back with your knees bent. Draw your knees bent at your chest, then extend your legs back and touch your heels to the floor. Be sure to force your lower back to the floor to avoid rounding your back. This is the great upper ab exercise for the gym.

Tuck and crunch – Best ab workouts

– Decline crunches:

The decline crunches give the strength to the ribbed abs and have particular advantages for the brain as well. Set the decline bench at an angle of 30-45 degrees and lie down with your hands on either side of the head. Now push your back down roll your shoulders and raise them while keeping your lower back on the bench. Make sure to keep your movements slow and steady throughout the entire exercise at the gym.

Decline crunches – best ab workouts

– Swiss Ball Crunches: 

The Swiss ball works by acting as a surface, weight and training machine. It also acts as a resistance that makes you put extra strength and muscle strength to complete the exercise. Lie on an exercise ball with the lower back curvature pressed against the spherical surface of the ball. Now your feet should be bent at the knee and pressed firmly against the floor. The upper torso should be hanging off the top of the ball.

These upper ab exercises work on a deep core muscle, the transverse abdomen, which helps build a strong core and a pain-free back.

2. Lower abs:

– Hanging leg raise:

This is one of the best exercises for lower abs. You need a lot of gripping power if you want to complete the hanging leg lift without loops and grip aids. 

No matter which of these options you choose, in the end, your body should hang down freely. The abdominal muscles are tense and you avoid a hollow back in the lower back. The legs do not just dangle down! Due to the tension in the stomach and tension in the legs themselves, they are relatively rigid. Hold a very slight bend in the knee joint and pull the toe towards the shins.

Hanging leg raise - A-Lifestyle
Hanging leg raise – Best ab workouts

– Hanging knee raise:

This exercise is found as the intense ab workout. Take a pull-up bar with a shoulder overhand grip, make sure your arms are straight completely and your feet are off the ground. Then brace your core and use your abs to raise the knees toward your shoulders. Pause a little when the tops of your thighs reach your chest. And then return to the starting position.

– Garhammer raise:

Garhammer raise is the best ab workout routine. To do this exercise, you have to start with feet pointing towards each other in a V shape with the knees bent. Now pull your knees towards your chest. At the beginning level, do this exercise with lying on your back. 

3. Oblique:

– Decline plank with foot touch:

To do this exercise, your body should be forming in a straight line from toes to head and the main aim is to maintain that position throughout the exercise. Now lift one foot off the bench and move it to the side to touch the floor. And now return it to the bench.

– Russian Twists with medicine ball or dumbbell:

The Russian Twist is a very popular variant of abdominal muscle training. Sit on the floor with your legs bent, your feet always stay on the floor during the exercise and do not lift. The upper body is slightly reclined. The medicine ball is held over the lap with outstretched arms and both hands. Then turn the upper body alternately to the left and right. Make sure your stomach stays under tension and your back is not getting into the hollow back.

– Wood Choppers with dumbbell:

Start by deciding whether to use one or two dumbbells. Here you should choose the form that will make it easier for you to perform the exercise. 

If you use a dumbbell, you should lift it with both hands at your upper chest. If you use two dumbbells, just hold them with your arms straight down to body width. As we know that this is side ab workout, we can easily get the best benefit from this.

– Side Bends with dumbbell:

Stand upright, the distance between your feet is about shoulder width. In one hand you hold a dumbbell, your arm is stretched out. The other hand you put on the hip. Your head is upright, your shoulders are pulled back slightly, and you hold tension in the abdominal muscles.

Now bend the upper body slowly to the side, by lowering the dumbbell down. The dumbbell does not move to the side during this movement, not forward or backward. Also, your upper body should only move to the side, not forward or backward. Also, hold your head upright and do not bend it to the left or right.

When the dumbbell is approximately level with your knee, the first movement phase is over. In the second movement phase, you straighten up the upper body and return to the starting position. Inhale while lowering and while standing up.

After about 10-20 repetitions, you take the dumbbell in the other hand and also train the other side of your abdominal muscles.

Wanna workout at home like you do at gym? You may need some equipment from the tips:
10 Best Gym Equipments Every Home Is In Need Of

5 minute ab workout

– Plank Up — 45 seconds:

Plank Up is one of the best upper ab exercises. That does not require any additional equipment in the basic design variants and therefore belongs to the bodyweight training.

The name suggests that it is a supporting and therefore static exercise. As so often, static exercises are great for burning a muscle. The forearm support can be carried out in different variants. The classic version of the plank up begins in a lying position on the stomach, with the upper body supported on the forearms. The elbows are at shoulder level. The forearms can be parallel to each other or pointed so that the hand’s touch. The feet only touch the ground with their toes.

From this position you put your body in tension and bring the sagging abdominal hip area in a line with your shoulders and legs.

– V-Up — 45 seconds:

The V-Up is the best upper ab workouts. It is a total core working movement. To do the V-Up exercise, lie down on a flat mat or surface. Begin with your straight legs and then come up. The touch your toes and then let torso fall back down. Bring your legs up in the air and touch your toes again.

– Plank With T Rotation — 45 seconds:

Plank with T Rotation is the best exercise for lower abs. To do this exercise, start with high plank and rotate your body to the right side, moving from your toes to the sides of your feet. And then reach your right arm overhead. Ensure your left-hand stays stacked under your left shoulder. Next, rotate your body back to the starting position and repeat on the left-hand side.

– Core Roll Up — 45 seconds:

Core Roll Up is the best for side ab workouts. To do this, lie on your back with legs straight. Squeeze your inner thigh together. Then lift your arms to the ceiling and back by your ears without moving the ribs. Nod your head and lift your shoulder off the floor as you reach the arms towards your feet.

– Mountain Climber Twist — 45 seconds:

To make the whole body fit on the go, the Mountain Climber is the ideal full body workout in just one exercise. Not only is the exercise perfect for shaping your abdominal muscles, but it also boosts your stamina and strengthens the muscles of the shoulders, buttocks and leg muscles. 

To do this, you take the push-up position. The arms are about shoulder-width apart and your feet are placed at a ship-wide distance. Make sure that your shoulders are directly above your hands and stay in that position as you move. 

The back is in a straight position. Now the knees are alternately pulled towards the rib cage in a sudden movement. The rear leg remains straight. Decisive in the execution of the mountaineer is that you maintain your body tension throughout. The leg biceps, buttock muscles, quadriceps, and straight abdominal muscle are trained.

How to get abs in a week? – Pilates workout (30 mins per day)

– Leg Circle:

Leg Circle is one of the pilates exercises for beginners. Lying on your back, with your arms outstretched and your legs straight, settle inside and lift your shoulders and legs around six inches from the floor. This gives the best ab which is needed by the people nowadays. Many people find this exercise as the intense ab workout.

– The One Hundred:

This is one of the best exercises for upper ab workouts. Physical activity is good for health from birth to the end of life. Those who exercise regularly know the benefits they bring and miss them when, for some reason, they stop practicing them. From so many exercises one is the one hundred exercise. This is the best exercise for lower abs.


– Single Leg Stretch:

Walking, running, crouching to sit and using leg muscles to lift things are part of our daily lives. There are many people who along with this daily routine need some extra workout to stay fit so single leg stretch is the best option. This exercise can be adopted as the ab workout routine.

– Criss-Cross:

Criss-Cross is the Pilates at home exercise. Fitness people want to have a slender, shapely, lean, muscular body. Fortunately, even without health as a priority, the people who knit earn good health. Therefore, the practice of physical activity such as exercise, weight training or cardio activities, contributes to improving both physical and emotional health. The best option to get the toned abs is with criss-cross exercise. This is also said as the intense ab workout.

– Double Leg Stretch:

Double leg stretch is one of the best ab workouts for ripped abs. When talking about stretching, the movements that many make in some corner before or after training come to mind: they pull an arm, a leg, a calf, among others. But stretching exercises go far beyond that. If want the perfect exercise for lower abs than the stretching is a must. The Double leg stretch is a classic pilates that targets the core.

– Scissor Kick:

Muscle weakness in the legs can be caused by many factors such as neuromuscular problems, nutritional deficiency, toxin accumulation, tiredness, exhaustion or simply due to the loss of muscle mass proper to aging. 

If the people tend to do the Scissor Kick exercise it will be the lifetime benefits for you.

– Pendulum:

Pendulum exercises are based on shoulder self-motion by circular and pendulum movements with the upper limb, obtained by brief trunk movements without any contraction of the shoulder musculature, requiring the limb to remain relaxed. 

Such exercises provide analgesia through oscillatory movements with slight traction and enable early mobilization of joint components, as well as favoring the production of synovial fluid. The use of load is only used when there is a decrease in pain to increase joint traction. This exercise also comes under pilates exercise for a beginner.

– Plank Leg Lift:

Pilates exercise has become increasingly popular for strengthening the core of the body, and for good reason. It works very well largely because it involves multiple muscle groups simultaneously. Its main benefits include strengthens the abdomen. The isometric board helps to work the deep muscles of the abdomen, which are the basis for the long-awaited defined belly. Relieves back pain.

– Plank Rock:

The benefits of the abdominal plank are not just for athletes, but for people interested in improving health, fitness and body aesthetics. It is an exercise that can be performed anywhere, without machines or loads, and in which you use your body weight as a tool. 

But it must be made clear: the abdominal Plank Rock is designed to work on your muscles and not as a tool to lose weight. It is a resistance exercise, isometric that is, works the postural muscles and also the deepest muscles of the abdomen. This is one of the best exercises for lower abs you can start today for the best abs.

– Mountain Climber:

The mountain climber is an intense ab workout exercise, but also aerobic, because it raises the heart rate greatly, thus promoting great calorie burning. The activity is known to harden the abdomen, strengthen and define legs and arms, tone the buttocks and, also, bring improvement to the cardiovascular system and balance.

Best stretch exercises after ab workouts

When you contract your abdomen you are not only making a series of muscle chains tense, but this affects your breathing, your digestion and the functioning of your organs. Having a stiff abdomen also makes your pelvis and chest less mobile, which can have effects on other parts of your body.

It is very necessary to cool down and relax your abs muscles after the above exercises. So in the following, we are introducing some of the best stretch exercises which you should not forget to follow.

– Cobra pose:

The cobra is one of the most graceful Indian asanas in yoga and is reminiscent of a proud snake, which raises its head to scent dangers in time. The execution of the asana increases the flexibility of your spine and widens the ribcage, which allows deep breathing. Your entire body front is stretched and tensions in the shoulder, neck, and abs area are released.

Cobra pose - A-Lifestyle
Cobra pose – Photo by gaia.com

– Cat and Cow stretch:

The Cat and Cow Pose is one of the asanas that beginners learn before, although its benefits are also seen in expert yogis, and usually include it in their daily routine.

The Cow Pose is complementary to the Cat Pose, so they are usually done together. Both begin from the quadruped position and serve to increase the flexibility of the torso and tone the abs.

Cat and Cow stretch - A-Lifestyle
Cat and Cow stretch – photo by fitness.stackexchange.com

– Twisting crocodile:

The effectiveness of this relaxing exercise while lying mainly refers to the abs and back. The core muscles are stretched and relieved. Both the hip area and the lower spine are to be helped to increased mobility during relaxation. 

Preventively, it can help prevent tension in the back, as well as menstrual problems, prostate problems, and even inguinal hernias. Also about the internal organs,, this exercise can achieve good effects. 

Twisting crocodile yoga - A-Lifestyle
Twisting crocodile yoga – Photo by verywellfit.com

– Standing side bends:

This stretching exercise is a basic standing pose that stretches the obliques and spine and promotes better posture. This exercise also helps to strengthen the legs.

To do this, stand straight with legs and feet together and reach both arms up overhead as you inhale. Then lower your right arm down the right-hand side of your body and exhale as you lengthen the left arm over the head and bend the body gently to the right side. Inhale to return arms overhead to center and exhale when you repeat the same steps for the left side.

Standing side bends - A-Lifestyle

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