Throughout my 16 years as a fitness professional, there is one question I get asked consistently. The fact that this question is asked so frequently clearly illustrates why most people never get a flat sexy stomach or a ripped set of six pack abs. This all too popular question usually goes something like this:
“What exercise can I do to isolate my (insert your muscle of choice – lower abs, obliques, upper abs, low back, etc)?”
It doesn’t matter what part of the midsection someone is trying to improve, they always seem to be asking how to “isolate” it. My first response to this question is always – “Why do you want to isolate it?”
Don’t get me wrong, there are times when “isolation” ab exercises are warranted. For example, if there is a muscle imbalance, you can isolate the weak link until you achieve an optimal strength balance between related muscles.
But once muscle balance is achieved, you would get much more bang for your buck if you performed exercises that integrate multiple muscle groups simultaneously. I call these particular exercises “turbo ab exercises”, and when performed properly, these little-known movements can deliver big time results incredibly fast!
You see, turbo ab exercises train several muscle groups at the same time. There are several advantages to this approach. First of all, it makes your workout extremely time efficient. Furthermore, turbo ab exercises often work your entire body, which burns many more calories (and thus a greater amount of fat) than any isolation movement could ever wish to burn! This results in superior results at a much faster pace.
Now, I’m going to teach you one of my turbo ab exercises which works the lower abs intensely while simultaneously training the whole body. Here it is:
Power Wheel Pike- Start in a push-up position with your feet in a Power Wheel. Do not let your hips drop during the exercise. Initiate movement with your abs, rolling the wheel in towards your hands while keeping the legs straight. Return to starting position and repeat.
Notice that in this exercise you are not lying down like you do in most ab exercises. Instead of passively lying on your back, you support yourself in a push up position throughout the entire movement. So while you’re working your abs, you are also working your chest, triceps, hip flexors, quads and just about every other stabilizing muscle in your body.
I have many other turbo ab exercises like this that I use with great success. The difference in trainees who use turbo ab exercises and trainees who simply perform the average “ab isolation routine” is absolutely amazing. Try it yourself…you’ll see and feel the difference almost immediately!
Now that you have learned the truth about “isolation” exercises, you can stop wasting your time and start integrating these truly effective exercises into your routine. Your midsection will thank you for it!