Expert Q&A

Ab exercises: Which exercise gets the best results?

What’s the single best exercise to tone my tummy?

-Nichol from Indiana

To attain fabulous abs, consistency counts. Try doing a five-minute abdominal routine daily. A study conducted by Peter Francis, Ph.D., and Jennifer Davis, M.A., at the San Diego State University Biomechanics Lab determined the most effective abdominal exercises. First on the list was the bicycle maneuver, followed closely by the second ranked, captain’s chair. Crunches on an exercise ball ranked third overall.

Don’t be fooled by the host of infomercial products to tone your midsection. The Ab Roller was proven to be virtually no more effective than the traditional crunch while the AB Rocker was shown to be up to 80% less effective. Why spend $150 on a piece of exercise equipment that does less to work your abs than a crunch? These results are consistent with the findings of ACE’s 1997 study of popular ab exercise products.

It’s essential to develop strong abs in order to have good posture, alleviate low back pain, and for overall health.

For more information on ab exercises see the following articles from TheDietChannel: Ab Exercises: General Info and The Secret to 6-Pack Abs

Cindy Guirino, RD/LD, CDE, CNSD, ACE PT
Contributing Expert

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