How To Get Six Pack Abs? Read on.. During the past two decades, the field of physical fitness has emerged as an exact science instead of just being activities to stay healthy. Sadly, most exercisers still don’t know how to utilize proper techniques so that they can get the most out of their fitness regimens. This includes workouts for six pack abs.
How To Get Six Pack Abs
It has been “programmed” into the human body to find ways to perform physical tasks with the greatest of ease and convenience. Individuals who lack the knowledge of proper exercise techniques will instinctively cheat. For example, you see elbows stretched to the sides while performing triceps exercises, the buttocks are raised at the height of a push-up, and both feet are firmly planted on the floor during sit-ups.
Because most people lack mental focus and knowledge of correct biomechanics, their bodies instinctively use the stronger muscles to perform activities, instead of the smaller muscles that are actually supposed to be targeted.
Most individuals erroneously believe that exercise is simply a physical task or activity that is a part of bodybuilding and sports training. For these people, it is enough for them to lift weights so that they build muscles. However, effort is not enough to make an exercise effective; you also need mental focus. This is the reason why there are mirrors in gyms. You tend to concentrate more if you see your muscles contracting.
Let us apply these principles to the standard sit-up. The reason why a lot of people can do several sit-ups in one set is because their feet are anchored to the floor. The use of the feet for anchorage is encouraged by trainers who believe that the more sit-ups you do, the faster your abs bulk up. In fact, the pain or burn that is felt after finishing a set of 50 repetitions or more is the origin of that popular line “No pain, no gain.”
In truth, however, you can create definition in your six pack by not anchoring your feet and using mental focus.
Using Mind-Over-Muscle Concentration
To give you an idea on how mind-over-muscle concentration works, do this simple exercise. Place your right hand over your heart as though you are making a pledge. Raise your left arm sideways so that it is parallel to the floor. Clench your left fist as though you are holding a handle to which is attached a two-ton weight behind you. Keep this image inside your mind. Next, try to pull that imaginary “weight” forward. You should feel your chest muscles contracting with your right palm, when actually you are not pulling a weight at all but just thin air. This is the kind of mental concentration you should have during a workout.
Common Errors in Performing Abs Exercises
To briefly review the anatomy of your abdomen, your abdominal muscles consist of an upper and lower section. The upper part functions to draw the shoulders toward the knees while the lower part moves the knees toward the shoulders. As you can see, every individual already possesses a six pack, only that it is hidden under layers of abdominal fat. To reveal your abs, you need to reduce your calorie intake and burn away the fat with the right cardiovascular exercises. Once your belly and waist have been trimmed down of fat, you can perform exercises like leg raises and sit-ups to tone up your abs and give them definition.
For abdominal exercises to be effective, again, you need to observe correct form and intense mental focus. Almost all abs workouts have the sit-up as its foundation. However, most people continue to anchor their feet to the floor while doing sit-ups. This form is wrong because you use the momentum of your hands and arms as you lift your head and upper body, as well as the downward movement of your pelvis. Because you are utilizing momentum, your abdominals become shorter and do not contract efficiently.
This isometric contraction does not effectively use your abs. Instead, you are working your hip flexor muscles to pull your shoulders toward your knees rather than your abs. As a result, it is your hip flexors that are getting bulked up and not your six pack.
Another common mistake that people make while doing sit-ups is lacing the fingers at the back of the head. Instead of contracting your abs to sit up, it is your hands and arms that pull your head up and forward. This move causes considerable strain on your neck, which may lead to serious injuries. It is best to stretch your arms in front of you or to place your hands on either side of your head. Do not let your chin drop to your chest or let your head lead the exercise. Instead, tilt your chin up toward the ceiling, so that it is your abs that are pulling your shoulders up.
Toning Your Tummy Through Sit-Ups
For skeletal muscle exercises to be very efficient, you should do the full range of motion, meaning begin with maximum to minimum extension. To be able to attain maximum extension with your abs, put some lift by placing two folded towels underneath your lower back.
When executing a sit-up, bend your knees. Press your palms together and then stretch your arms toward your knees. This promotes proper form. To use mental focus, concentrate on the bottom of your rib cage where your abdominals originate and as it stretches down to your pelvis. Pull from deep within your core, drawing your belly button toward your spine, and then move up.
Hold this position briefly. Then, curl your spine so that you lift your shoulders from the floor. Do this minimal range for 4 weeks before proceeding to a full sit-up with both the shoulders and the back lifting off the floor. Your movements should be kept low in your abs. You should also feel your internal obliques and pelvis assisting in finishing the exercise. Do these proper sit-ups in sets of 10 to 15 reps.
It should be mentioned that all the muscle groups work in synergy, so make it a point to give your low back muscles a good workout as well. Isolation exercises like sit-ups should be done as a part of a complete body regimen.