WORKOUTS

Best Lower Ab Exercises That Will Set Your Core on Fire

Those “lower abs” that a lot of people refer to is actually a misnomer. Your rectus abdominis, or the “six-pack muscle”, is actually one, long muscle. It covers your entire midsection, running from your sternum to your pelvis. So, technically, there’s no such thing as lower and upper abs. In these best lower ab exercises, you won’t be isolating the lower abs but will be contracting the entire abdominal muscle.

To get the best results for toned abs, combine a sweat-inducing workout with a smart diet. Remember, focusing only on training the muscles is not enough. Your diet also plays an important part.

10 Best Lower Ab Exercises

V-Ups

lower abs workout at home

The V-ups are a complete core working movement. You work your abdominal muscles to lift the weight of both your arms and legs. This exercise also challenges flexibility, balance and coordination.

How To Do It:

  1. Lie down on your back, extending your arms behind your head.
  2. Keeping your core tight, simultaneously lift up your straight legs and upper body off the floor. Your hands and feet should meet over your torso.
  3. Lower yourself back to the starting position.

Bicycle Crunch

lower abdomen workout

In one single exercise, you work on your upper and lower abs, and also the obliques. You also engage your hamstrings and quads, which will tone your thighs.

How To Do It:

  1. Start by lying faceup on the mat with the lower back pressed to the ground. Bent your knees and place your feet flat on the floor. You can place your hands on the sides or behind the head.
  2. Contract your core muscles and raise your shoulders off the floor.
  3. Lift the right leg off the ground and bend it towards your chest. At the same time, lift the left shoulder blade higher off the floor and bring the elbow to your right knee.
  4. As you bend the right leg, the left leg should also come off the ground and straighten out.
  5. Rotate your torso and bring up the left knee to your right shoulder, while you straighten out the left foot.
  6. Continue alternating back and forth.

Mountain Climbers

best lower ab exercises

During mountain climbers, your entire body is at work balancing, controlling and moving. It’s not just a lower ab exercise but it also engages your entire core, legs, chest, biceps and more. On top of that, you get the combination of strength training and cardio rolled into one. If you want to burn more fat and calories, just move faster, as long as you can keep the form.

How To Do It:

  1. Start in a high plank position with hands shoulder-width apart. Keep your body straight from head to ankles.
  2. Raise your right knee toward your chest, while you keep your abs pulled in and the body straight.
  3. Return the right leg to the starting position until the leg is straight and support by the toes and immediately bring the left knee to the chest.
  4. Continue switching knees.

If you want extra work for your obliques, do mountain climber twists. The technique is the same except for bringing the knees to the opposite elbows.

Core Roll-Up

best lower ab workout

The roll-ups exercise also offer a great challenge for the abdominal muscles. It also mobilizes your spine. The movement trains both the rectus abdominis and the transverse abdominis, meaning both the upper and lower abs.

How To Do It:

  1. Start by lying with your back on the mat. Keep the legs straight and rest the arms above your head.
  2. As you inhale, lift up your arms. When they come over your shoulders, begin curling your chin and spine.
  3. As you exhale, use your abs to roll-up and then curl towards your toes to form a “U” shape with your body.
  4. Inhale again, squeeze your abs and slowly roll back to the mat. Exhale as your shoulders come to the floor and reach your arms overhead.

If you have tight hamstrings, you can first try doing this exercise with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground.

Plank Hops

plank hops

Plank hops not only train your core but also get your heart rate up. So you get the combination of cardio and core in one, effective move.

How To Do It:

  1. Start in a high plank position and keep the feet together.
  2. Pull in your abs and hop your feet to the right so that the knees are brought to the right elbow.
  3. Hop your feet back to the plank position and repeat the movement on the left side.
  4. Continue alternating sides.

Rolling Plank

A rolling plank is a more dynamic variation of the basic plank. In addition to working your core muscles, it also requires you to maintain balance. This makes it a multifaceted move.

How To Do It:

  1. Start in a low plank position. Brace your core and maintain this contraction throughout the movement.
  2. Roll on to your left forearm into a side plank. Your elbow should be directly under your shoulder and the feet stacked on top of each other. Your right hand you can either place on your hip or stretch out towards the ceiling. Hold this position for 10 seconds.
  3. Roll back to the center and then repeat the side plank in the other direction.
  4. Continue alternating sides.

Scissor Kicks

best lower abdominal exercises

Scissor kicks are one more very effective abdominal exercise. The main muscles involved in this exercise include the transverse abdominis and the hip flexors. Moreover, it also engages the rectus abdominis and the obliques.

How To Do It:

  1. Start by lying down with your back pressed against a mat. Extend your hands and place them either by your sides or underneath your glutes.
  2. Engage your core and lift both your legs up to about a 45-degree angle. Try to keep them as straight as possible throughout the movement.
  3. Next, perform the scissor kick by moving one leg up and the other down.
  4. Continue switching legs up and down.

To make this exercise a bit easier, you can start by keeping the legs lower to the ground. Then, you can work your way up.

On the other hand, if you want to make this ab exercise more difficult, add ankle weights for resistance.

Dead Bug

good lower ab workouts

The dead bug exercise allows strengthening the core without putting much strain on the lower back. It gets its funny name from the way the way a bug looks that ended up on its back.

How To Do It:

  1. Begin with lying down with your back on the mat. Extend your arms above you, pointing to the ceiling. Bend your knees at a 90-degree angle over the hips.
  2. As you keep your shoulders down and engage the core, slowly lower your right arm and left leg until they are almost parallel to the floor.
  3. Return to the starting position and repeat with the opposite limbs.
  4. Continue alternating sides.

If you want to make it harder, add dumbbells and ankle weights, or use a resistance band.

Hanging Knee Raise

best exercises for lower belly fat

Hanging knee raises is also one of the best lower abs exercises. In addition to working your lower abs, it also engages your entire core and challenges your grips and forearms.

How To Do It:

  1. Hang from a pull-up bar or rings with your hands at a shoulder-width distance. Your arms should be completely straight and feet off the ground.
  2. Brace your abs and raise your knees up so that they are above hip level.
  3. At the top, pause briefly and then slowly lower your legs back to the starting position.
  4. You can also add an extra move by alternating lifting the knees to the left and right.

During the movement, avoid swinging the body. Maintain tension in your abs, move slowly and when you lower the legs, don’t swing them behind your body. This should help to keep the torso as still as possible.

As you become more advanced, you can make this lower abs exercise a bit more challenging. You can either add weights to your feet or do the hanging knee raise with a twist. The latter involves raising your knees to the sides instead of the upright way.

Ab Wheel Rollouts

lower stomach exercises

When using the ab roller, you’re challenging the rectus abdominis, as well as the deep spinal stabilizers. However, it’s also more than just a lower ab exercise. You also work your chest, hips and triceps.

How To Do It:

  1. Kneel on the floor and position with your knees about hip-width apart. Hold the ab roller on the floor in front of you.
  2. When you’re ready to wheel the rollout, tuck your in your tailbone, squeeze the abs and make sure to maintain stability in your pelvis.
  3. The movement should come from your spine. Start moving your body forward into a straight position. In the beginning, you can start with a shorter range of motion. Later, as you get stronger, you can wheel out farther until you reach your full range of motion.
  4. Make a short pause in the rolled out position and then let the flexion from your back pull back to the starting position.

To make these exercises for losing belly fat a bit easier, you can use a stability ball. Also, once you’ve mastered rolling out from the knees, you can progress to rolling out from your feet.

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