Effective Abdominal Exercises for Women

Which Abdominal Exercises Should Women Utilize?

woman performing stability ball abdominal exercise

If you’re a woman looking for a toned and firm stomach, understanding the key abdominal exercises will be important. With so many different ab movements out there to choose from, it can get difficult sorting through which are going to work best to allow you to get to your end goal.

Are you better off performing abdominal exercises using an added resistance or perhaps the best way to go is using an exercise ball instead?
By taking the time to figure out which abdominal exercise is best, you can address these questions and ensure that you put together a great plan of action to achieve this goal.

Let’s take a look at the main ones that you must know about.

Plank on One Foot

women performing a plankThe first abdominal exercise women will want to consider is the plank movement, but we’re going to utilize a more advanced version of the plank where you’re going to lift one foot up off the ground as you perform the exercise.

By doing this, you’re essentially decreasing the base of support in which you’ll be stationed on, thus forcing the ab muscles to work harder than they ever have before.

After getting into the plank position, simply raise one leg directly up off the floor, hold that for about 30 seconds, then lower and repeat to the other side, taking a rest partway if you need to.

Prone Ball Roll Ins

Prone Ball Roll-insThe second best abdominal exercise for women is a prone ball roll in. This is a perfect one for both boosting ab strength as well as enhancing the shoulder strength development since the upper body will get called into play to help you maintain balance.

To perform this one you’re going to place the hands directly below you and then put the feet up on an exercise ball behind you. You should now be in a flat position, similar to that of a plank only this time balancing on the hands and legs raised above the floor on the ball.

From there, contract the abs as you move the ball in towards the stomach until you’re as far as you can go, and then reverse the direction until you’re straight out again to complete the rep.

This one will really call upon your balancing abilities so you may have to do it a few times first to get used to the movement, but with enough practice, you’ll easily be able to complete it.

Twisting Decline Sit-Up

Twisting Decline Sit-upThe twisting decline sit-up is another fantastic abdominal exercise for women to include in your workout routine. Note though that you should avoid using weight with this exercise as that could potentially increase the muscle size and cause you to appear wider in the waist – something most women definitely do not want.
Instead, perform the movement in a very slow and controlled fashion, which will ensure you place maximum tension on those ab muscles.

Simply get into a decline bench and begin lowering yourself down and up again, adding a twisting movement each time you come up and alternating between sides.

Lying Leg Raise

Lying Leg RaiseFinally, the last abdominal exercise to consider is the lying leg raise. This movement is great for targeting the lower abdominal muscles, one area that proves to be quite problematic for most women.

For this one you simply lie flat down on the floor with the legs extended and then raise the legs upwards until they’ve reached 90 degrees. Pause there and then lower back down again to complete the next rep.

When doing this one note that you don’t want to let yourself lower the legs entirely to the ground, but rather keep them hovering above slightly in order to maintain the constant tension on the abdominal muscles.

So there you have it, these are among some of the best abdominal exercises for women. If you can ensure that you get these into your own workout routine and then follow a calorie reduced diet to help shed any body fat that you currently have, you will be on your way to a slimmer and more toned stomach.

More about Training the Abdominal Region

  • Best Methods to Help You Lose Stubborn Tummy Fat
    While abs exercises are great for strengthening your core abdominal exercises are only a small piece of the puzzle if you want to lose fat. Learn what you have to do to lose fat on your mid-section.
  • 100 Exercises to Help You Define and Strengthen Your Abs
    Find free exercise videos of exercises targeting the entire mid section from the upper and lower abs to the obliques and core muscles. Use these exercises in addition to the abdominal exercises in this post and reap the benefits of a complete core workout program.

Author Profile: Shannon Clark

Shannon holds a degree in Exercise Science and is a certified personal trainer and fitness writer with over 10 years of industry experience.

Disclaimer: The views of the author are his or her own, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Ask The Trainer.
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