“How do I flatten my tummy?”
This is the most common question I receive. Hands down.
How we look obviously affects how we feel about ourselves. Now this is a muddy area for a lot of women because we don’t necessarily have an accurate idea of how we actually really look, and hormones, the sssssssscales, and mood can drastically affect how we see ourselves at any given time.
But that’s a discussion for another day.
Now I’m assuming you recognize that nutrition is 80% of the battle to getting flat abs but for now let’s talk ab training.
One of my favourite ab moves, the stability ball jacknife, is designed to tighten your tummy, strengthen your core and promote overall body strength. You only need a stability ball (cheap as chips these days) and you’ve got a wealth of awesome ab toning and core strengthening exercises at your fingertips.
In the video below you’ll see Liz who’s a long term client. After her retirement from work, Liz decided that she wanted to get into shape and feel fitter and more mobile. She likes to travel both overseas and locally on her motorbike and as she turns 70 this year she is a shining example of consistency and commitment. She never exercises like a crazy woman, but she just keeps showing up and regularly improving. She’s never deprived herself in terms of food, she eats clean 80% of the time and she’s in great shape.
If she can do it….
The stability ball jackknife can be done by anyone. Because you’re on your elbows there’s far less stress on shoulders and no strain in the wrists which can occur with a lot of other ab planking exercises. Apart from resting on a bench or chair, you don’t need a heap of room or special equipment. Yet, you’ll get more benefit from spending 60 seconds on this one exercise than doing hundreds of sit-ups and risking your back and neck.
Start by resting your elbows on a bench and using one leg (the other rests on the floor for balance) push the ball to a position under your shin. Adjust your weight so you feel balanced, brace your abs and then lift the second leg to rest on the ball.
Take a moment to find your balance and then gently roll your knees in towards your chest keeping your shoulders still. Push your legs back into a straight plank position bracing strongly through your belly.
Slow is always better with this exercise.
Once you’re confident with your balance (and it’s all about confidence) try 12 slow reps. Take a brief rest and repeat once more. And feel the burn! Even beginners can do this exercise with practise.
Add these into your workouts 3 times a week or do them alone and you’ll feel stronger, more toned, and confident in no time
With modifications, no impact options, full follow along workout videos, ab finishers, and nutrition guidance there is no reason for not getting started. And there’s not a pullup or burpee in sight!