Ab workout with ab wheel
Sit-ups, curl-ups, leg raises... an exhaustive ab workout may take several exercises. So let’s see an exercise now, which can be enough in itself as a complete ab workout.
Lower abs, upper abs
The title may be misleading, because there are no such separate muscle groups in the human body. There are only abdominal muscles; some exercises rather stimulate the muscle fibers on its upper part, while others those on the lower part.
But if you use your abs in their full range of motion, you won’t need isolated exercises unless you are extremely disadvantaged for genetic reasons.
The solution is: the ab wheel
There is a device by which you can do a complete ab workout, so you won’t need to do thousands of ab exercises each time. No, this is not something from TV-Shop, promising a six-pack without any sweat or effort. It will be hard work. This is one of the most painful ab exercises. But as a reward, you can provide all your abdominal muscles such an overall stimulation that it may render any other ab exercise unnecessary.
This magical device is called ab wheel or ab roller. Most of you have probably heard of it. It was not invented yesterday. Yet you don’t see many folks in gyms working out with ab wheels, even though it has several advantages:
How to use the ab wheel
Unfortunately, most people tend to forget, or are unaware of a very important thing: NEVER EVER let your lower back over-extend while using the ab wheel. You must keep your back rounded throughout the whole exercise. But – what makes it difficult – as your abs tire, this will happen if you let it happen: your weary abdominal muscles cannot keep the round curve of your trunk anymore; your adbomen will “collapse” and your back will become concave. This is dangerous because it will impose unnatural and excessive load on your vertebrae. Plus, in this position you are doomed to use your back, pecs and arms instead of your abs, to get back into the starting position somehow.
All in all: roll forward on your knees, while keeping the round curve of your back all along. Don’t let your trunk lose its round curve and over-extend! Then, get back to all fours using your abs. It should be like a crane was pulling you upwards by your belly, while your hands are rolling towards your knees.
Remember: your abs are working when you are approaching your rib cage towards your pelvis. Therefore, this exercise should follow a similar pattern. After you have pulled yourself back to the starting position, get back to extended position again. Do as many reps as you can properly and in a controlled manner as described above. The next set may come after a one-minute rest. One thing you can take for granted: you will make less reps now. But don’t bother.
4 sets will surely be enough for the first time. And here we must warn you: even if you had trained your abs regularly before, be prepared for the next day, as you will experience the worst muscle fever ever.
When it is over
When you are done, it is extremely important to stretch your abs thoroughly. If you skip this step, the ab wheel might get you cramps in your abs. And believe me, dude, this is something you don’t wanna experience.
What you can achieve by using the ab wheel:
- it will significantly shorten your ab workout;
- it can be helpful at making the separation of your abs deeper, and the result will be spectacular.
- It works both the lower and the upper fibers of the abdominal muscles; no other exercises are required after a hardcore ab wheel rollout.
To cut a long story short, we definitely recommend that you give the ab wheel a try. If you are doing it properly, you can only profit from it!
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