Abdominal exercises to avoid

Many workout enthusiasts spend a lot of time getting washboard abs. And the best thing about abdominal exercises is that they are very convenient. You can do many abdominal exercises anywhere and you don’t always have to go to the gym to do them. But some choose less effective abdominal workouts. These are not only ineffective abdominal workouts that do not help build strong abdominal muscles, but can also cause back pain. Let’s find out the worst abdominal exercises so you can ignore them.

Health Shots reached out to fitness guru Aminder Singh of Team Aminder fame for a list of abdominal exercises you should avoid.

Skip these abdominal exercises. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

What are abdominal exercises?

Abdominal exercises focus on strengthening the abdominal muscles, which are crucial for core stability. These exercises help improve the core’s ability to provide support and stability throughout the body, Singh says. Although abdominal exercises do not specifically reduce weight or reduce the belly, they play a vital role in improving core strength and force production. For example, imagine a boxer throwing a punch. The power generated by the ground passes through the trunk and is delivered by the abdominal muscles. It is therefore a solid core that acts as a force deployment unit.

Abdominal exercises you can avoid

Sometimes it’s not enough to move, twist or turn. This is why not all abdominal exercises are good and may also be less effective for you. Some of these exercises are:

1. Leg raises

Leg raises are often confused with abdominal exercises, but they primarily work the leg muscles and aren’t effective at targeting the core, says the expert. Additionally, they can also put a lot of stress on the lower back, which can lead to injury.

2. The Roman chair creaks

This exercise is not ideal for the abdominal muscles because it mainly involves the hip flexors. This involves contracting your upper body towards your knees and can put a lot of pressure on your lower back as well.

3 The hanging leg rises

Hanging leg raises primarily activate the hip flexors rather than the abdominal muscles, so it’s not a good exercise for the abs.

4. Sit-ups

Although sit-ups are a traditional abdominal exercise, they are not effective if you target the abdominal muscles. Instead, they focus on the hip flexors, Singh says.

5. Crackles

Crunches are very common, but they primarily target the rectus abdominis, which is the outer layer of abdominal muscles. They mostly focus on the top layer of the core and can do your back more harm than good.

Woman doing crunches
Crunches are not the best exercise for abs. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

6. Russian twists

People tend to perform it incorrectly, so it won’t do much for the abs. They often bring their back too far forward without properly engaging the core.

However, you should know that each person’s exercise routine should be tailored to their specific needs and conditions. There is no one-size-fits-all approach and exercises should be adapted accordingly to ensure safety and effectiveness. Any exercise that puts excessive pressure on the lower back should be avoided as it can impair core strength.

You can still achieve fabulous abs by considering incorporating alternative exercises that are safe and suitable for everyone, regardless of gender, age, or physical condition. One such exercise is the plank grip, which involves maintaining a static position without movement. This makes it a suitable choice even for people with lower back pain. So choose the right exercise to get great abs and be sure to follow expert advice.

Also, don’t forget to eat well. Exercise alone cannot help you get rid of belly fat. Support for a balanced diet is non-negotiable.

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