Core workouts are about so much more than chasing a six-pack. Strong abdominals are pivotal for stabilizing your spine, offering plenty of health benefits. Or, in other words, we think abs workouts are well worth your time.
You don't need much (if any) equipment to train them too — our featured routine uses just a single dumbbell (or adjustable dumbbell) to supply a comprehensive eight-move core workout.
Its creator, personal trainer Rachael Sacerdoti, explains that "these exercises target key muscles in the core, including the abs, obliques, and lower back.
"Incorporating abs workouts into your routine means you'll see significant improvement in your core strength and stability. This, in turn, can have a positive impact on your posture, balance, and overall performance in daily activities."
Perform the eight exercises as a circuit, resting as little as possible between each one. Once you've finished all eight, take a 30-second break then return to the start and repeat the sequence until you've completed three rounds.
Watch Rachael Sacerdoti's eight-move abs workout
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"This abs workout offers a flexible option to target and strengthen your core muscles," says Sacerdoti. She recommends adding it into your exercise plans once a week, either as a standalone or as a way to end a longer strength training session.
She has also provided some top tips to help you get the most out of the session. "As with all my workouts, it's always important to warm-up before starting," Sacerdoti says.
"For the best results, make sure to engage your core during each exercise, and to challenge yourself further consider adding weights and gradually increasing them as you become stronger."
Sacerdoti uses a dumbbell for a couple of exercises in this routine to make them slightly more difficult, but most only require your bodyweight. "[These equipment-free] abs exercises can be challenging and highly effective for building your abdominal muscles," she says.
"Developing a strong core is essential to protect your back and reduce the chances of getting injured. A strong core contributes to better posture and increased flexibility."
If you want to add more core training into your fitness routine, why not give these core strengthening exercises a go? Perhaps you find a slower practice suits you better, in which case use these core yoga poses to work your abs and boost your mobility.
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Harry Bullmore is a Fitness Writer for Fit&Well and its sister site Coach, covering accessible home workouts, strength training session, and yoga routines. He joined the team from Hearst, where he reviewed products for Men's Health, Women's Health, and Runner's World. He is passionate about the physical and mental benefits of exercise, and splits his time between weightlifting, CrossFit, and gymnastics, which he does to build strength, boost his wellbeing, and have fun.
Harry is a NCTJ-qualified journalist, and has written for Vice, Learning Disability Today, and The Argus, where he was a crime, politics, and sports reporter for several UK regional and national newspapers.
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