Sunday, February 18, 2007
ACHIEVING AWESOME ABS
As we all are looking into the best exercises to trim or define our abdominals there are several exercises which claim to tone & strengthen the abdominal. Then there are these so called AB machines advertised in many magazine which claims to give you the perfect Abs in just few days. Don’t believe the hype.
SMASHING THE MYTHS
Q – Will doing a lot of sit-ups reduce the fat around my waist?
Referring to the popular belief you cannot spot reduce fat from a certain part of your body, this is achieved by a good diet and aerobic exercise with strength exercises.
Yes doing a lot of sit-ups will give you rock hard Abs covered by fat, if you are happy with it.
Q – Will doing side bends reduce my love handles?
NO, Love handles (the pads of fat above the hip bone at the side of the abs) are fat and will reduce only as stated above with a good diet, cardiovascular exercise and strength training. Its not recommended to do side bents. Side bents may develop your obliques (muscle at the side of the abdominals) and there for will give you bigger love handles, as the muscle underneath increases. There has been proven fact that a lots of people who performs a lots of side bents ends up with bigger waist.
Q – Are the AB machines on the market better than a normal crunch?
No, The American Council on Exercise (ACE) recently made a study to see if the fancy Ab training devices live up to there claims. They compared the Ab Roller, Ab Sculptor, Ab Trainer & Ab Works against the traditional crunch using no equipment. The results indicated that the fancy devises on the market made no difference compared to a correctly performed traditional crunch. The researchers of course state that weight loss and muscle definition is achieved through combination of Aerobic Exercise, Strength Exercise & Proper Nutrition as stated above.
It is true that some machines help to perform the exercises correctly but they don’t do anything magical. Any exercise you can do with a fancy Ab machine you can also do without it.
Q – Do I need to do high repetition for greater results?
Depends, you should treat your abdominal muscles the same as any other muscle in your body. If you want your abdominal more defined with large groves in between them you will need to train them with extra weights [ie: holding weights when you do crunches and adding resistance to your leg raises, Advance trainers only please!]. If you want more endurance Abs for a sporting purpose than you may do high repetitions, but its always important to seek advise from your trainer before doing it.
Hope you guys have got the answers for the common myths about the abdominal training.
American Council on Exercise (ACE),
Zef Eisenberg Science Publications,
Sports Injuries Prevention & Treatment 3rd Edition.
Labels: Abdominal Training