5 Best Workouts For Your Core To Try This Summer
Crunches and sit-ups are great ways to tone your abs, but if you really want to strengthen and tone your core, these five workouts for your core are the answer. Working out your core is crucial for improving not only your abs, but your lower and upper back which will actually help you to in other workouts if you’re stronger in the middle.
Planks are the best workout for your core as they rely on your full-body strength and discipline. Try the Plank-a-thon, comprised of five plank moves lasting 30 seconds each. Start with a regular plank, then plank with one leg raised for 30 seconds per leg. Next, keep your core tight as you reach one arm out in front of you, while simultaneously raising the opposite leg. Repeat with the other arm and leg. The ‘hot hands’ plank, lift one hand off the ground while keeping your body still and repeat with the other hand. Finally, do a 30-second side plank on each side. Planking is one of the best workouts for your core because they also strengthen other areas, such as your arms and shoulders, and improve balance and concentration.
2. Standing climb
Spinning workouts are not just a great form of cardio exercise; they’re also one of the best workouts for your core. If you crank up the resistance and begin a standing climb, you will soon begin to feel your midsection working hard. This is because you have to tighten your core to keep balanced and weighted evenly as you essentially ‘hover’ over the bike. This workout is great as well because the high resistance tones your legs and butt, and your arms will be worked from keeping a controlled position on the bike.
3. Scissor kicks
Like all workouts for your core, scissor kicks relies on control and position to ensure an effective workout. Lie on your back with your legs in an L shape, with your hands under your butt if you need that extra support. Slowly lower one leg so that it is level with your core, and then raise it back up again without touching the floor. You should do the same with the other leg, but at opposite times, so only one leg is in the air at a time. This is a great multi-tasking workout, as you work one part of your core as you lower your leg, then another when you raise it. It is also a go-to for people who struggle with neck problems, as you keep your head and neck rested for the entire exercise.
4. Mountain climbers
Mountain climbers start in plank position. Keeping the core tight, bring your left knee to your right elbow. Repeat with your right knee to your left elbow, so it’s a sort of flipside bicycle crunch. Mountain climbers are a better workout for your core though, as your position strengthens your arms, shoulders and back as you keep your form while performing the exercise. The best core workouts focus on your core but also tone other muscle areas, but make sure you keep your back level so that you don’t twist your entire body – the point is to force the abs to contract!
Shakira’s hips don’t lie – and neither do her abs. The Colombian singer credits belly-dancing to keeping her midsection so tight and toned. As well as being a fun activity, it’s a great workout especially for your core as it relies on controlled and elaborate movement of the torso. It comprises cardio and core training, and it is low-impact so anyone of any fitness level can do it. Not only is it beneficial for toning your core; the fluid movements improve flexibility and strength of the spine, which is an often overlooked area when training.
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