Tired of planks and sit-ups? Try these creative ab moves that can be done entirely while standing!
When you think of exercises for your abs, we bet planks and floor crunches or sit-ups are the first to come to mind. They are definitely some of the most common moves in a core workout. However, they aren't always the most effective, and they can be challenging for people who aren't able to easily get up from the floor.
Check out these five moves you can do to strengthen your abs without ever getting down on the floor:
SUMO OBLIQUE CRUNCH DANCER: Stand with you feet wider than your hips, toes pointed to the outward corners of the room. Lower down into a sumo squat and lift to your toes. Place fingertips together above your head and keep your elbows wide. Slide your right elbow down sideways towards your right knee and then slide back up to center, all while keep low in the sumo squat hold. Repeat on the left and then the right again, so on and so on.
*OPTION: Stay on flat feet: Complete the move on flat feet instead of lifting to your toes. While being on your toes does add an extra challenge for your core, staying on flat feet is still beneficial. Additionally, only go as low in the squat as your flexibility allows. Find the version of the move that is a challenge but still doable for your body. As you get stronger and more flexible, you can adjust your options accordingly.
2. HIGH KNEE RUN: Stand tall with your feet shoulder-width apart.
Next, bring your right knee up to hip or waist level and quickly switch sides repeatedly. Lean back slightly with your upper body to This move can be done with a jump or march between each step. Be sure to use your abs to bring those knees up high and swing your arms for power!
3. MOVING WARRIOR 3 KNEE PULL: Start by standing straight with hands by your side. Hinge forward at the hips, laying your torso forward in a 90 degree angle from your hips as you extend your arms straight forward by your ears. One leg stays stable on the ground as the other extends straight up and out behind you.
From the Warrior 3 position, slowly hinge back upwards as you bring the extended leg in and down. In a continuous movement, bend the knee on the moving leg and use your abs to draw it up to hip height as you stand straight back up. Repeat this movement as many times as you can without tapping the floor. Your core will be engaged not only to pull your knee in but to maintain balance throughout the movement.
*OPTION: In Warrior 3, you should ultimately reach a perfect 90 degree T position but if your balance or flexibility isn't ready yet, let the toe on the moving leg rest slightly on the ground behind you in a 45 degree angle instead of 90.
4. WINDMILLS: Stand with feet wide and arms raised wide overhead like a star.
Hinge forward at the hips as your bring your Right hand down towards your left toe, keeping your back as straight as you can. Lift back to center and repeat on the other side. Focus on your core and obliques to control the movement in both the up and down directions.
*OPTION: Speed the move up to increase the cardio intensity. Add dumbbells or kettlebells to increase the strength intensity.
5. BOXING: Have you ever tried a boxing workout? If not, you should! Punching and kicking combinations are great for chiseling the abs as well as strengthening the back and other core muscles. With moves like cross punches and side kicks, you'll also engage your obliques and enhance your coordination and flexibility. Plus, you'll have fun and burn a ton of calories!