Flip through any magazine that writes about fitness, and sooner or later, you are bound to find an article that tries to explain to you how essential it is to work on your core muscles. What are these core muscles that they keep trying to tell you about? In your abdomen, there are five important kinds of muscle that go all around your abdominal cavity. They hold you up, give you the strength to stand up, and protect your abdomen. And of course, to fitness enthusiasts who love the look of a six-pack, they make you look great. To people who find that great abs are beautiful and who find that they help them do better in all kinds of physical sports and activities, the tendency is often to focus on exercising the core muscles in the wrong way. They make the mistake of only paying attention to the abdominal muscles. An intense abs exercise routine won’t give you the wonderful abs that you are looking for if you don’t give your other core muscles any attention. That means working on the muscles that are a part of your abdominal wall, of course. But it also means working on your pelvic muscles and your oblique muscles. It means paying attention to the muscles that hold your back and your spine up.
A complete abs exercise routine is not merely about doing a lot of crunches for your six-pack while you forget about all the other muscles that they connect to. You’ll certainly gain a bit of definition in your abdomen. But it won’t be very strong if none of the core muscles that they connect to your abs are strong as well. Depending on muscles that aren’t properly supported all around by other core muscles, will mean one thing – misplaced trust in what you’re abs can do. And sports injuries.
A great abs exercise routine isn’t just about putting your abdominal wall through a punishing set of exercises. It is about strengthening every muscle that it connects to, so that it has a leg to stand on. When you target all the muscles in your hips, your upper back, the sides of your abdomen and your lower back, you’ll find that your abs are somehow magically firmer, stronger and that they somehow hold you up much better. So what kind of exercises do you need to be looking into? You do need your abdominal crunches of course; but you also need to be serious about your squats, you’re hanging knee raises, and your planks. Pilates can be a great way of targeting all your core muscles without a lot of pain.
Remember – you need to look for an abs exercise routine that gives you strength by working out your entire core. And that isn’t just you front abdominal wall. You don’t really need a personal trainer for this; get a quality DVD that tells you how to strengthen your core. It won’t need you to use any props other than an exercise mat. For something that is achieved as simply as this is, one wonders why more people don’t try it.