First of all it is important to clarify that the only thing that is possible to do with ab exercises is abdominal toning – it is not possible to get rid of fat in the belly area by doing abdominal exercises.
So no matter what the ab machines and other exercise machines promise, you will only ever be able to do abdominal toning using those machines, not spot reduction. Some of the best exercises for abdominal toning are:
Ab crunches are effective abdominal toning exercises. The basic crunch targets the upper abs and involves lying on the back with the arms crisscrossed across the chest, with the knees bent. Raise the torso up using the ab muscles and try pressing the back down on the floor at the same time. Perform about 3 to 4 sets of 20 to 25 reps each.
The reverse crunch is effective for lower abdominal toning – here you lie on your back with your legs in the air with the ankles crossed and hands at the side of your hips. Raise the hips a couple of inches off the floor and squeeze the ab muscles. Perform a similar number of reps and sets.
Abdominal toning anywhere and anytime
The deep stomach muscles can be targeted not specifically when you are working out, but at any time of the day when you are working, sitting at the computer, standing in a queue and so on. This method of abdominal toning involves drawing the stomach in and keeping it tight for a time before releasing it, and then repeating the process. Practice will make it easier to indentify and target the specific ab muscles.
Exercises that involve balancing
Exercises such as skiing, rollerblading or skating, snowboarding and skateboarding and so on challenge you in a number of ways and also call upon the person to improve their balance. This engages and involves the stomach muscles, which is by these exercises that require balance, are also effective abdominal toning exercises.
Cycling, walking, swimming
These common exercises that most of us do to keep in shape and stay healthy are also great abdominal toning exercises though they do not target the abs directly. However, they help reduce the total amount of fat in the body, and this in turn helps to reduce belly fat as well, which ultimately reveals the underlying adnominal muscles.