Abdominal Workouts for Strength
Abdominal workouts that help strengthen the deep abdominal musculature and lower back musculature can be performed without added resistance...like dumbbells, medicine ball,etc..
How so you ask? By incorporating some instability, that's how. So, what does that mean?
Well, let's go back to the first article/page I wrote about abdominal workouts. Remember I wrote about static holds(planks) in different planes? Good. Now imagine if you had to hold a front plank with your forearms on a Stability Ball. Or a side plank performed on a Bosu or wobble board(not recommended on a Stability ball). Do you think that a 30 second hold will feel more like 1 minute or longer?
Yes, it will.
Anytime instability is included, your body has to adapt to balance. So, more muscle fibers are needed and recruited.
This means that while your body is trying to find its balance, the onus is now off the smaller stabilizer muscles (which shouldn't be doing the work in the first place)and placed on the larger,stronger and also deep muscles of the abdomen.
So,if your body has trouble adapting to this instability, you will work HARDER! However, the good news is, the better you get at balancing your body with these core exercises, the more efficient you will be. As an athlete, the more efficient you are , the better your performance.
In a nutshell, if you master the planks on a stable surface, try an unstable surface and see how long you can hold with good form. Other progressions would include plank holds(both positions)with various arm and leg movements,seperately and together; seated on ball or Bosu full sit-ups and seated on ball or Bosu full sit-ups with opposite elbow to knee touch.
Adding resistance to these of course will be tougher, however, first things first, so I advise you to stay on course until you can perfect plank holds first.
Questions or advice please go to my Contact Form on this or other issues.
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From Unstable Abdominal Workouts to Strength Training