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Unlock a Stronger Core: A Simple Guide to the Best Ab Workouts

By: Tara Littlejohn, BS-ACSM CPT, Personal Trainer at Village Ocotillo


Are you ready to take your fitness journey to the next level? Having a strong core is about much more than just flaunting a set of six-pack abs at the beach. It’s about ensuring your body functions optimally, maintaining stability, balance, and preventing injuries in your day-to-day life. At Village Clubs, we understand that a strong core is the cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle. Let’s explore the best ab exercises that can help you achieve this goal.


1. Deadbug: A Core-Strengthing Classic
The Deadbug is a classic exercise that targets your core while also enhancing stability. Here’s how to do it:

  • Start by lying on your back on an exercise or yoga mat with your knees bent.
  • Brace your lower lumbar spine against the mat and lift both legs up into a tabletop position, with your knees and hips at 90 degrees.
  • Raise your arms straight toward the ceiling.
  • Maintaining a neutral spine, extend your right leg forward while simultaneously raising your left arm overhead in a controlled manner.
  • Return your arm and leg to the starting position, then switch to repeat the movement on the opposite side.
  • Aim for 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions three times a week.

2. McGill Curl Up: Core Strength without the Strain
The McGill Curl Up is a fantastic ab exercise that focuses on your core without straining your lower back:

  • Begin by lying on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Place your arms flat on the floor with your hands underneath the small of your back and your elbows resting on the floor.
  • Tuck your chin toward your neck and engage your abdominal muscles.
  • Lift your head and shoulders up toward the ceiling while feeling your abdominal muscles contract without pushing your lower back into your hands.
  • Hold the head and shoulders up for 2-3 seconds, then slowly lower back to the floor and relax your muscles.
  • Perform 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions, three times a week.

3. Bird Dog: Achieve Core Stability
The Bird Dog exercise is an excellent way to build core stability and strength:

  • Start on all fours in the tabletop position.
    Place your knees under your hips and your hands under your shoulders.
  • Maintain a neutral spine by engaging your abdominal muscles.
  • Draw your shoulder blades together.
  • Raise your right arm and left leg while keeping your shoulders and hips parallel to the floor.
  • Lengthen the back of your neck and tuck your chin into your chest to gaze down at the floor.
  • Hold this position for a few seconds, then lower back down to the starting position.
  • Raise your left arm and right leg, holding this position for a few seconds.
  • Aim for 2-3 sets of 10 repetitions, three times a week.

Remember, a strong core is essential for enhancing your quality of life and preventing chronic pain and injuries. Make these ab exercises a part of your routine, and experience the power of a healthy core with Village Clubs – your premier destination for a holistic, healthy lifestyle in Phoenix.

Get ready to transform your fitness journey and embark on a path to a stronger, more resilient you. Join us at Village Clubs today!

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