Video: Best Abs Exercise Ever (THE WINNER!)
What's up, guys? Jeff Cavaliere, ATHLEANX.com. I know. I said it. The best ab exercise ever. But you know me by now. I wouldn't come to a gun fight with a knife. I came with the evidence of why I feel this is the best ab exercise ever. Of course, it has to meet the criteria for being called "the best ever". First and foremost, this is a ground based movement. I like when you can get a closed chain environment and you can keep your feet on the ground. In this case I've got my hands and my feet on the ground as opposed to hanging from a bar. Number two: this ab exercise is one that is scalable. Meaning I will show you variations that allow the ranked beginner to try this and the most advanced guy – the guy with the strongest core ever.
Number three: I allow this exercise to be performed anywhere. I'm going to show you how you can do this in the gym, or if you're at home, even better, I'm going to show you how you could do this with nothing but a pair of socks. Then finally, this ab exercise meets that all-important criteria of targeting those areas of your core that often times get overlooked, or more importantly, do not get trained together. Forget the isolation ab movements, guys. If you want to train your core you'd better do two things. You'd better learn how to integrate as many muscles in the core together at one time as possible. This will do that. And number two: you'd better learn how to train for stability and not strength because the primary purpose of your abs is not to be strong. The primary purpose is not to be able to crunch an entire weight stack in a weighted crunch machine.
More importantly, you'd better be able to hold entire weight stacks on your back through a stability exercise. This is a stability exercise that will do everything that it needs to do. So with that being said, let's start taking a look at the progression. Okay, first of all this exercise is a variation of a plank. But for those that tell you "Oh, planks is all you need to do", no. you're not going to cut it that way because there's not enough of a challenge to your stability. Not when people can break world records and do planks for hours and hours on end. You have to be able to still provide the challenge. We can do that by moving our limbs in space. That is going to provide a dynamic challenge for the stability of your core, right? Stability is only a challenge when you have other things that are moving. So we get in this plank position, and now we aim to just pull our knees in toward our chest. Now we're working the lower abs here because we're initiating a bottom up movement.
Now this is really easy. I said you could do this in a gym if you're using a plate here, or more importantly – and you can see even as I rotate as the next step – but more importantly let's take that into amore practical environment if you're training at home. You could just flip off your shoes, get a hardwood floor, a tile floor – any slick floor – come down to the ground and start banging out the same exercise. Now I talked about scalability. We can scale this back for beginners. Maybe you can't hold a plank and then also pull your knees in. you just don’t have the lower ab strength to do that. That's not a problem. What you can do is drop down to your knees as you pull in, and then when you slide your legs back let the legs actually lift themselves of the ground when they run out of room to slide.
So you're basically doing a variation of a semi-plank and semi-assisted plank here on the knee pulling. You can do that. Now again, back to the more advanced version of this, you don’t have to do just a straight pull in, pull out maneuver here. That's not going to be challenging either because one of the other components you always want to try to incorporate in the core training is rotation. So now you'll see me do this with the rotation to the left, or rotation to the right, or of course, alternating back and forth. But you know that's not even really going to keep me satisfied because I want to make it even harder than that. So we can add our serpentine variation to this. This is an exercise I've shown you before, but I want to show you the progression here on the single exercise so you'll find a way to challenge yourself at any level.
The serpentine one now ads a much more dynamic stabilization requirement for your core. Then finally, we can say "Hey, let's not just focus on the ability of moving our bottom toward our top, but let's focus on moving our bottom away from our top." That puts us right squarely here, into the really hard versions here, which is a cliffhanger plank that's done dynamically. Okay, so now we're sliding our legs out behind us and trying to extend out into this cliffhanger. The ability to hold your plank here, and the stability required here just shot off the charts. But that's great if this is what's challenging for you. You've got to do the things that challenge you. Of course, I can make it even harder for you. What do we want to get in here? Rotation. So what we do is we push ourselves out of the cliffhanger and we rotate at the same time.
And this is the coupe de gras. Now I'm not saying that this is the ultimate ab exercise here. The variation that is challenging to you in the sequence; that is the ultimate ab exercise and that's the one that you should be performing. As you get better and stronger, the next one you should be doing is the next hardest in line. I hope you guys found this helpful. You know, these are the ab exercises that help to carve up the midsection that you want. Remember, you've got to hit every single area of your core if you want a complete midsection. We help to do it in the ATHLEANX training system. I don’t overlook any valuable component of core training. As a matter of fact, it's way up here in the list of importance when it comes to training like and athlete. So I never miss a beat here and make sure you don’t either in any of our programs. You can find them over at ATHLEANX.com. In the meantime, if you've found this video helpful leave your comments and thumbs up below.
Tell me what else you want to see me cover here on this channel and I'll do my best to do that. All right, guys. Let's get this thing done and I'll see you back here in a couple days..