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Lower ab exercises target and strengthen the lower abdominal muscles, which are a part of the rectus abdominis muscle group.
Best lower ab exercises for building a stronger core
The rectus abdominis muscle runs vertically along the front of your abdomen. It is responsible for flexing your trunk and stabilizing your spine.
Lower ab exercises specifically work the lower portion of the rectus abdominis muscle.
Lower ab exercises can strengthen the lower portion of the rectus abdominis muscle, helping to improve your core stability and overall abdominal strength.
Exercises for lower abs can also help improve your posture, reduce your risk of injury, and enhance athletic performance.
The lower abs are challenging areas to target, but the best lower ab exercises can help tone and strengthen them effectively, allowing you to meet your fitness goals.
Here are the best lower abdominal exercises that are particularly effective for targeting the lower part of the rectus abdominis muscles.
The Weighted Crunch targets the entire abdominal muscle group, including the lower abs.
The weighted exercises for lower abs involve lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor.
You hold a weight, such as a dumbbell or a weight or bumper plate, behind your head and lift your shoulders and upper back off the ground while squeezing your abs.
Adding weights to your crunches can increase the resistance, making the exercise more challenging and allowing for greater activation of the abdominal muscles, including the lower abs.
Hanging leg raise
Hanging leg raise is an excellent exercise for targeting the lower abs.
The movement involves hanging from a pull-up bar with your arms fully extended and your legs hanging straight down.
You then raise your legs, keeping them straight, until your body forms an “L” shape.
The movement requires significant activation of the lower abdominal muscles. These work to lift the legs and maintain a stable position.
The hanging leg raises are some of the best lower ab exercises that can help strengthen and tone the rectus abdominis, helping to improve core strength and stability.
Hanging leg raises require significant upper-body stability and control. Thus including the exercises in your training regimen can help improve grip and upper body strength.
For best results, avoid swinging or using momentum. Doing so can reduce the effectiveness of the exercise and increase the risk of injury.
Swiss ball plank
The Swiss ball plank is one of the most effective exercises for lower belly fat that strengthen the lower abdominal and other core muscles.
The Swiss ball plank is a variation of the traditional plank exercise.
It involves remaining static in a push-up position with your forearms or hands on the Swiss or exercise ball.
The exercise requires the engagement of your core muscles, including the lower abs, to keep your body straight and prevent your hips from sagging.
This continuous tension and engagement of the lower abs can help to strengthen and tone the muscles over time.
Placing your forearms on a Swiss ball helps to increase the instability of the exercise, making it more challenging.
The Swiss ball plank is a challenging movement. But it is one of the most effective lower ab exercises for strengthening the lower abdominal and core muscles, improving stability and balance, and enhancing fitness and athletic performance.
Steps to follow
- Begin the exercises for lower abdominals by placing a Swiss ball on the floor and positioning yourself on your hands and knees in front of it.
- Place your forearms on the Swiss ball with your elbows directly under your shoulders and your palms facing down.
- Extend your legs out behind you to put you in the push-up position. Your toes should be on the ground, and your body straight, from your head to your heels.
- Engage your core muscles to help maintain a stable and straight position. Avoid letting your hips sag or pike up.
- Hold the plank position for 20-30 seconds or longer, depending on your fitness level and ability.
- Then, carefully lower your knees to the ground.
V-ups are challenging lower ab exercises for the abdominal muscles, including the lower and upper abs and the obliques.
The exercises for lower abdomen involve lying flat on your back and extending your arms above your head.
Then, you lift your arms and legs simultaneously, bringing them towards the center of your body to form a “V” shape.
The V-Ups movement requires significant activation of the abdominal muscles, including the lower abs. These work to lift and hold the upper body and legs in a stable position.
V-Ups are some of the most effective lower ab exercises because of the movement’s focus on lifting the legs and lower body toward the center of the body.
The movement targets the lower abs, helping to strengthen and tone the muscles.
V-Ups can help boost core strength and stability and improve hip flexibility and mobility.
They also require coordination and balance, making them a well-rounded exercise for overall fitness and athleticism.
Steps to follow
- Lie flat on your back on an exercise mat or the floor.
- Extend your arms overhead, make them parallel to the floor, and keep your legs straight and together.
- Breathe in and engage your core muscles to lift your legs and upper body off the floor simultaneously as you exhale. Ensure your legs remain fully stretched.
- Aim to touch your toes or reach your hands toward your shins, creating a “V” shape with your body.
- Hold the contracted position briefly, focusing on engaging your lower abs and maintaining balance.
- In a controlled manner, slowly lower your legs and upper body back down to your starting position while breathing in.
- Repeat the movement for the desired number of repetitions.
- Keep your core muscles engaged throughout the entire exercise. That will help stabilize your body and maximize the effectiveness of the movement.
- Maintain a smooth and controlled motion, avoiding any jerking or swinging.
- Focus on the contraction of your lower abs as you lift your legs and upper body. Don’t rely solely on momentum.
- Start with a manageable number of repetitions and gradually increase as your strength and endurance improve.
Bicycle crunches can target the entire abdominal muscle group, including the lower abs.
The exercise involves lying on your back with your hands behind your head and your legs bent at 90 degrees.
You then alternate bringing your elbow to the opposite knee while extending the other leg, mimicking a pedaling motion.
The movement will require your abdominal muscles, including the lower abs, to work together for stabilization and control.
The twisting motion makes the bicycle crunches one of the most effective lower ab exercises.
The twisting motion helps to engage the obliques, one of the key muscle groups that support and stabilize the lower abs.
Bicycle crunches can help boost core strength and stability, increase flexibility and mobility, and improve coordination and balance.
Mountain Climbers are excellent lower ab exercises that target the entire core and upper body.
Mountain climbers involve starting in a plank position and then bringing your knees towards your chest in an alternating, running-like motion.
The exercise requires a contraction of the lower abs, hips, and upper body muscles.
It also requires engaging your core muscles to help maintain a stable and straight position and then contracting your lower abs to bring your knees toward your chest.
The constant tension and engagement of the lower abs can help to strengthen and tone the muscles over time.
Mountain climbers are exercises for lower abdominals that also require upper body and shoulder strength. You will need cardiovascular endurance and coordination as well.
Thus, mountain climbers are excellent lower ab exercises for targeting the abdominal muscles and full-body movements that can improve overall fitness and athletic performance.
Plank pikes great lower ab exercises for targeting the lower abdominal, core, and upper body muscles.
The plank pikes exercise involves getting into the plank pose. You then lift your hips toward the ceiling and move your body into an inverted V shape.
The movement requires a contraction of the lower abs, the upper body muscles, and the hips.
The exercise requires engaging your core muscles to lift your hips and keeping your body stable throughout the movement. The constant tension and engagement of the lower abs can help strengthen and tone the muscles over time.
Plank pikes also require excellent upper body and shoulder strength, flexibility, and mobility in the hips and hamstrings.
Thus, aside from being one of the best lower ab exercises, plank pikes are excellent full-body exercises for improving fitness and athletic performance.
Steps to follow
- Get into the plank pose with forearms on the floor and your body, from your head to your heels, in a straight line. Your elbows should be directly under your shoulders.
- Engage your core muscles to maintain a stable and straight position.
- Lift your hips towards the ceiling, bringing your body into an inverted V shape.
- Pause at the top of the movement and lower your hips to your starting position.
- Repeat 10-15 reps for a set and 3-4 sets per session
- Ensure you engage your core muscles throughout the exercise.
- Avoid letting your hips sag excessively, Keep your elbows directly under your shoulders.
Boat Pose (Navasana)
Navasana, or Boat Pose, is a yoga pose that strengthens the core muscles.
It is also an excellent lower ab exercise for improving balance and concentration.
Steps to follow
- Sit on the floor, bend your knees, and keep your feet planted on the
- Place your hands on the floor by your hips and point your fingers forward.
- Lean back slightly, engage your core muscles, and lift your feet. Keep your knees bent and your shins parallel to the floor.
- Inhale and extend your arms straight out in front of you and make them parallel to the floor. Keep your shoulders relaxed and your chest lifted.
- Slowly straighten your legs and lift them toward the ceiling. Keep your toes pointed and your legs together.
- Continue to engage your core muscles as you lift your legs to help maintain balance and stability. Ensure you keep your spine straight and shoulders relaxed.
- Hold the pose for a few breaths, release it, and return to your starting position.
Medicine Ball Slams
Medicine ball slams can be great exercises for targeting the lower abs and other core and upper body muscles.
It entails lifting a weighted ball overhead and slamming it onto the floor, using the core and upper body muscles to generate power and force.
It requires the engagement of your core muscles to help maintain stability and control throughout the movement.
You contract your lower abs as you lift the ball overhead to help maintain a stable position.
You then use your core and upper body muscles to generate power and force slam the ball down. That can help strengthen and tone the abdominals, including the lower abs.
Medicine ball slams also require good levels of upper body and shoulder strength and cardiovascular endurance and coordination, making them one of the best lower ab exercises for boosting fitness and athletic performance.
The Pilates Hundred is an exercise commonly used in Pilates classes to strengthen the core muscles.
It can be a challenging movement, but The Pilates Hundred is one of the most effective lower ab exercises for strengthening the core muscles and enhancing cardiovascular endurance and breathing.
The exercise involves engaging the core muscles, including the lower abs, and lifting the head and shoulders off the floor while simultaneously pumping your arms up and down.
It requires significant activation of the lower abdominal muscles, forcing them to work to support the spine and maintain a stable position.
Aside from being one of the most effective lower ab exercises, the Pilates Hundred also engages other core muscles, including the obliques and the deep abdominal muscles.
The exercise can also enhance cardiovascular endurance and breathing, and general fitness.
Steps to follow
- Lie on your back, bend your knees, and place your feet flat on the floor. Position your arms straight down at your sides.
- Engage your core muscles and lift your head and shoulders. Your neck should be long and your chin slightly tucked in.
- Raise your arms and lift them a few inches off the floor. Your palms should be face down, and your arms should be straight and parallel to the floor.
- Start pumping your arms up and down, ensuring they remain straight and parallel to the floor. Inhale for five arm pumps and then exhale for five arm pumps. Keep alternating the breathing until you count 100 pumps.
- Ensure your core muscles stay engaged, maintain a stable position, and focus on the breathing.
Benefits of lower ab exercises
It is essential to approach fitness and exercise with a well-rounded approach that targets all areas of the body, including the entire core. But focusing on your lower abdominal muscles with lower ab exercises can give you several benefits.
- Strength and definition
Targeting the lower abs helps to strengthen and tone these specific muscles, leading to increased definition and improved muscle tone in the lower abdominal region.
- Core stability
The lower abs play a crucial role in core stability and support. Strengthening the lower abs helps to improve overall core strength and stability. That can help maintain proper posture, reduce the risk of back pain, and improve functional movements.
- Balance and posture
Strong lower abs can improve balance and stability, allowing you to perform daily activities and exercises with greater control and ease. It can also help maintain proper posture, reducing the risk of postural imbalances and related issues.
- Preventing injury
By improving overall core strength and stability, lower ab exercises can help to prevent injuries. Strong core muscles can support the spine and pelvis during movement, reducing the risk of strains or injury.
- Performance in sports and activities
Many sports and physical activities involve movements that require lower abdominal strength and stability. Focusing on lower ab exercises can enhance your performance in these activities and help improve your overall athletic ability.
Final words from LiveLIfe
Incorporating lower ab exercises into your fitness routine can benefit your physical and mental well-being.
Bear in mind, however, that the key to seeing results from your lower ab exercises is to perform the movements with the correct form, engage your core muscles, and maintain a healthy diet and consistent exercise routine. These are some of the routes to success.