Oblique exercises are important in the development of strong abdominals. Strong obliques can help prevent lower back pain injuries and improve your posture.
Their main functions are rotation, flexing and lateral flexion of the spine. It helps protect the spine and lower back in every day activity such as bending, lifting, reaching and pulling. If they are weak they cannot provide the support and stability to the lower back which can cause injury.
They basically act like a girdle supporting and protecting the spine and lower back. They allow you to rotate, bend, twist and lean from side to side safely. Because our lower back is most vulnerable when we lift or twist, whenever we move suddenly to one side to dodge and obstacle or as a lot of you have felt the electric shock sensation moving up your spine when lifting a child improperly followed by lower back pain. In order to avoid such discomfort we must strengthen the muscles with oblique exercises.
The obliques are located one on each side of your torso. They attach to the ribs and run down to your hips. The external obliques lie closest to the surface while the internal obliques lie deeper and closest to the back..
For the oblique exercises to be effective at strengthening your muscles they must consist of some form of twisting or rotating and side bending. When you do stomach crunches you work the obliques as they help to pull up your shoulders when you crunch. But to really isolate the internals and external you need to include at least one twisting or bending exercise in your abs workout.
Athletes can greatly benefit of the stability strong sides can bring as a lot of their actions will involve some sort of rotational movement. It will definitely increase their performance. Sine many workout routines neglect the incorporation of oblique exercises athletes should really incorporate them into their training.
Reduce Your Love handles
One thing you must know is that spot reduction is a myth. Everyday hundreds of people perform twist and bend with the sole purpose of reducing their love handles. Problem is they are performing them incorrectly to burn their belly fat.
You will not shrink your waistline by training your obliques with a strengthening routine. You must be careful as this can build up the muscle and push the fat out even further making your sides look bigger.
However, there is a way to target them without fear of over-building them. You must perform the oblique exercises in an aerobic way, this will encourage fat loss in the love handles. Here is a more in depth description of Ab Aerobics.
The Oblique Exercises Workout.
This program will strengthen both the internal and external obliques. As they combine rotation of the spine which also activates the erector spinae.
Abdominal muscles work all day long so they resist fatigue quite well. That means you can do this routine 4 times a week without fear of over training them. Incorporate one or two of these exercises in your regular flat belly exercises routine.
Side Bridges – Lie on your right side with your feet together. Your right forearm on the ground so your elbow is under your shoulder and your left hand is on your hip. Raise your hips off the floor until you form a straight line with your head and your feet. Slowly lower your hips and repeat 12-15 times then switch sides.
Do not strain your neck, keep it in line with your torso by concentrating on keeping the spine straight.
Twisting Crunch – Millions of awestruck fans watched as Rocky did these before every final boxing match. Many mistakenly use this exercise for the six pack abs, when in fact it works the external obliques. Lie on the floor with your knees bend and feet flat on the floor. Your hands behind your head with your elbows out to the side. Rather than curling up straight as in a stomach crunch, try to touch your left knee with your right elbow. Lower and repeat to the other side.
Exhale at the top of the movement and hold for a count of two. When you can do 20 reps on each side, do them on a decline bench or hold a weight to your chest.
Swiss Ball Twist – Lie on a swiss ball like you would on a bench with your upper back in contact with the ball and your knees bent at 90 degrees with feet flat on the floor. Cross your arms over your chest. Slowly rotate your upper body to the right, feel the obliques stabilizing your core by keeping them tense. Rotate until you are on your right shoulder. Slowly rotate back to starting position then repeat for the left side. Do 12-15 reps on each side.
Make sure not to tilt your head down to look at the floor or to the side. Keep your neck and spine straight at all times.
V-Twist – Lie on the floor on your back with your knees bent at a 90 degree angle. Raise your feet off the floor so your lower leg is parallel to the floor. Cross your arms over your chest. Straighten your legs until they form a 45 degree angle with the ground and point them to the left. At the same time crunch up while twisting to the right and extend your arms forward. Slowly return to start and repeat for the other side. Do 10-12 reps for each side.
Take at least 3 seconds to perform this exercise and 3 seconds to return to start. This will make it easier to stay stabilized.
It is very important to maintain proper posture or body alignement when performing these exercises. Remember do not sacrifice good form to do extra reps.
Our Flat Belly System
As I said before simply doing abdominal or oblique exercises will not flatten your belly.
The best way to get a flat belly is through a combination of full body exercises and interval training as part of the cardio.
The best part is that these can be done in very little workout time.
All you need is 45 minutes 3 times a week to get the body of your dreams.
Our NEW Ultimate Belly Fat Burning Guide To six Pack Abs combines the most effective ways to lose belly fat in one complete Manuel.
Plus it comes with our world famous Eating For Abs nutrition guide as a FREE bonus, among others.
The most effective way to stabilize the lower back is through oblique exercises.