At all times, a flat stomach without excess fat, with relief muscles was considered an ideal aesthetic image. Since the mid-20th century, women have easily taken up the initiative of a slim, toned body with a flat stomach, and now, in our time, abs exercises have become equally popular for both men and women.
Abdominal muscles are not only an aesthetic beauty, but also an indicator of health, since the abdominal muscles allow you to maintain a beautiful posture and a healthy spine. Any complex movement begins with a contraction of the abdominal muscles of the core. Only after they are engaged in the work, the force is transmitted through the arms and legs to the barbell or dumbbells. The press, like the lumbar muscles, refers to the stabilizer muscles, the cortex muscles
The main reasons why you should work on your abs:
- Protection of the spine. The spine is supported not only by the back muscles, but also by the abdominal muscles. If the abdominal muscles are not sufficiently developed, this increases the tension in the intervertebral discs of the spine, which increases the risk of destruction of the lumbar region. Read more: How to correct your posture (exercises)
- Relieving muscle tension. At night, the lower back muscles often remain tense, as a result of which the spine does not recover. A person wakes up tired, his back hurts.
- Improve athletic performance. The abdominal press plays an important role in all everyday activities, as well as in those sports where you need to run fast or turn your torso. Athletes with weakened abdominals are more likely to have colic in the side. Strengthening the abdominal wall is a great way to solve this problem.
- Improvement of the gastrointestinal tract. Abdominal training improves digestion, prevents bloating and constipation.
Anatomy and function
- Read the main article: Abdominal muscles
The abdominal region consists of four muscle groups.
- The transversus abdominis (transversus abdominis) lies inside, supporting your internal organs.
- The internal obliques run diagonally from the pelvis to the sternum, and
- The outer obliques lie above the inner obliques, helping you bend and rotate the body.
- The rectus abdominis lies on top of the transverse abdominis, which is what we call the abs. Starting at the pelvic bone, it is attached to the sternum. The rectus abdominis supports a straight back and allows you to lean forward. Connecting fibers, crossing it across, create the same-six cubes, which serve as irrefutable proof of lean and good physical shape.
Some authors divide the press into upper and lower, claiming that different exercises work mainly on one of the parts. This is wrong, since the rectus abdominis muscle is strained along its entire length with any movement, the difference is only in the degree of tension.
Many people believe that exercises on a specific area burn fat there, but in fact fat is burned all over the body. Read more: Local fat burning
Features of abs training
The training program for the abdominal muscles depends on your goals, the degree of development of subcutaneous fat and muscles. It should be remembered that relief can be obtained only if the thickness of the fat fold on the abdomen is less than 1.5-1 cm. Therefore, training should be focused on two goals::
1. Reduction of subcutaneous fat.
Local fat burning is a long-standing but widespread myth. Fat is burned (with rare exceptions) mainly throughout the body at once. If the thickness of the fat fold is more than 2-3 cm, you need to burn off excess body fat in general with the help of aerobic training and fat burners. Aerobic training is best done on the days between strength training sessions.
2. Muscle hypertrophy
In other words, an increase in the volume of press cubes. The number of repetitions, under normal circumstances, should not be higher than 15 times, if you train for maximum hypertrophy, and not for endurance. Use weights so that the last repetitions are successful. Abs training is theoretically no different from training other muscles, so follow the same principles when training it as for other muscles.
3. Exercise vacuum
Thanks to this exercise, you can significantly strengthen the internal abdominal muscles, which will lead to a decrease in waist size and improve the shape of the press. It is considered one of the most effective exercises to increase the tone of the internal transverse abdominal muscles. The exercise is also found in yoga.