“Core” Knowledge for Better Flat Abs Exercises

Visit any gym and ask fitness enthusiasts around what their goal is in pushing their bodies to the limit. Chances are, the overwhelming answer is to have that six-pack look or get rid of the unwanted middle flab. Follow up this question with what muscles are they targeting. Again, chances are, you will get a wide-eyed look or a shrug.

It would not be surprising to learn that all those people doing crunches and other abdominal exercises do not have any idea what muscles they are working on or how these muscles benefit people in their daily lives. Well, one might say that I am following instructions from an expert and others have shown results, so why ask.

While this may be true, it might not hurt knowing something about what you are sweating on. Learning about the different abdominal muscles and its functions will make you appreciate what you are trying to do and may provide added motivation. For those who may decide to do it on their own, this knowledge will definitely be of great help in targeting the right muscles and in choosing the right exercises.

Rectus Abdominus

More commonly known as the “six pack” muscles, these are the muscles that are located in either side of the abdominal midline. This is the muscle that is closest to the surface and start from the front of the ribs and runs down towards the pelvis.

While all efforts are directed towards aesthetic reasons, this muscle is very essential since this supports your spine in bending forward or doing any flexing movement. Weakness in the rectus abdominus may cause chronic pelvic instability and lower back pain.

External and Internal Obliques

These are the V-shaped muscles which run diagonally down the sides of the midsection, from the pelvis to the bottom of the rib cage. They are very vital in supporting the spine in any twisting or rotating movements.

Transversus abdominis

Among the abdominal muscles, the transverses abdominis or transverse abdominals are the deepest and it completely wraps around the midsection and pulling it like a corset. These muscles are very vital in supporting the trunk of our bodies. In combination with the back muscles, they provide spine stability which helps in preventing back injury or strain during any movement or even during normal posture. These are the muscles that keep you from slouching after sitting for long periods. Putting strength on transverses abdominis helps in the improvement of one’s posture.

Clearly, having well-toned abdominal muscles is not just for show but greatly aids in everyone’s daily activities. It has been called “the core” in the exercise world for its importance in providing overall support to the body.

It certainly is good to learn about “core knowledge”; but just knowing this will not give us that desired physique. You have to cut down on those calories and engage in flat abs exercises found in some fitness magazines to have that awesome look.

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