Making Ab workout mistakes can sabotage your six pack results. Find out how to get abs here.
If you’re just going through the motions and making mistakes with your ab exercises it’s time to fix the mistakes and your chiseled six pack will come. We asked personal trainer Robert Hammond how to get abs and for the Top 6 Ab Exercise Mistakes that he sees in the gym. Make sure you’re not guilty of one (or more) of these 6 common ab workout mistakes.
Best Ab Workout Mistakes To Avoid
Ab Workout Mistake #1: Too many ab crunches!
Crunches are definitely not the most effective ab exercise. Crunches focus on the rectus abdominis and only work your core in the sagittal plane. If you think you are crunching your way to awesome abs, guess again – it’s time to mix up the exercises in your ab workout.
Ab Workout Mistake #2: Incorrect Ab exercise technique.
Positioning your feet under a bar or having a mate stand on them whist performing sit-ups focuses the workload on your hip flexors (Iliopsoas, Sartorius and Rectus Femoris) and this is not effective, nor is using momentum to perform the sit-up. Abdominals should be trained in slow, focused movements, feeling the ab muscles contract, and holding that contraction.
If you are unable to complete an ab sit-up without assistance, start off on a swiss ball as this will reduce the load and help you learn the correct ab exercise technique. Do not allow the ball to move underneath you and complete slow, controlled movements focusing on contracting your abs
Ab Workout Mistake #3: Not utilising different planes of motion during ab training
Rectus abdominis are NOT the only ab muscles present in the body, therefore training in one plane is not going to work the entire abdominal muscle group. Include frontal and transverse planes as well as sagittal.
Rectus abdominis is trained in spinal flexion. Offset this movement with a combination of spinal extension, isometric/stabilization, lateral spinal flexion and spinal rotation exercises. Do not forget your back! The erector spinae muscles run along the spine and provide a primary movement function in back extension and are often overlooked in ab workouts.
Ab Workout Mistake #4: Training abs prior to your workout
Never train abs prior to your workout. Your core is critical for stability during exercise and for protection against injury. By training abdominals prior to a workout, you are fatiguing them and therefore putting yourself at greater risk of injury.
Ab Workout Mistake #5: Ab muscle over training
Abdominals do not require daily training. Treat your abs as you would any other muscle, training them hard for 8-15 reps, focusing on the ab muscle contraction, and holding it. 15 minutes is sufficient time for training abs, and allow your ab muscles a few days of recovery before training them again. 2 non-consecutive ab workout days per week is enough.
Ab Workout Mistake #6: Forgetting about your ripped diet
Training your abs is NOT the critical element for getting “ripped abs”- Diet IS. Remember abs are made in the kitchen! Gym-goers often ask why they have not seen a difference to their waist line after training abs for an extended period. Training abs will not give you the flat stomach or ripped 6-pack you’re looking for if you have a layer of fat covering them. A high protein clean diet, no alcohol and increasing your HITT cardio will fast-track you to seeing your abs.