8 Hardcore Core Workouts Every Level Will Love


By: , SparkPeople Blogger
  :  9 comments   :  62,029 Views

It is a truth universally acknowledged that abs day is a dreaded day. The isolations, crunches, planks and Russian twists are moves we love to hate, the ones that make our bellies hurt when we laugh the next day. But, in the end, it's all so worth it for that tight core feeling. Yes, even the laugh pains.
Aside from the fact that strong abdominal muscles look really, really great, working out the mid-section of your body also reaps a whole bunch of health benefits. Not only will bending, twisting and lifting start to feel easier, but your posture and balance will also improve tremendously. While it's important to exercise every part of our body to see a real difference all over, taking some time to work on your abdominals once or twice a week is important for any exercise routine. Get a confidence boost in as little as 10 minutes with eight hurts-so-good at-home workouts.

1. Beautiful Belly Dance: Core Cardio I
Next to the word "abdominals" in the dictionary should be a picture of Shakira shaking her famous hips. Take a page from her book and get an introduction to the abs-busting world of belly dancing with Hemalayaa.

2. Core Fusion Pilates: Pure Power Cardio
The "powerhouse," otherwise known as your abs, pelvis and lower back, is the focus of every move in Pilates, making it the perfect, low-impact exercise for anyone looking to target those six-pack muscles. 

3. Ageless: 360-Degree Core
Kathy Smith manages to squeeze all our favorite abs moves into this seven-minute workout. When all is said and done, you'll be feeling it in your upper abs, middle and oblique muscles.

4. 10-Minute Crunchless Core Workout
Hate crunches? Rest assured that you're not alone. Crunches are tough on the neck and upper back and are often improperly performed. Plus, many other moves are even more effective at targeting those same muscles. Follow along as Coach Nicole guides you through this tough, but doable Pilates-inspired workout. 

5. Work the Core, Feel the Burn
While the yoga mat is probably the most used piece of equipment when it comes to abs, the stability ball is a strong contender for most useful piece of core equipment. The rounded surface area gives you an extended range of motion, allowing you to hit those oblique and lower back muscles. You'll feel core muscles you never knew you had in this quick six-minute workout. 

6. Yoga for Weight Loss: Core Workout
One of Hollywood's most sought-after trainers comes straight into your living room with this tough yoga series. You might be surprised at how a few simple moves can really force your core to work. 

7. Power Boxing: Core Workout
"In boxing, all your power and speed stems from your core," Olympic bronze medalist Marlen Esparza says at the start of this high-energy, bodyweight routine. You're going to feel muscles you didn't even know were hiding in your mid-section. 

8. Xtend Lean and Chiseled: Core Challenge
Up for a challenge? Andrea Rogers uses tiny movements to make a huge impact on every muscle in those abdominals. It might not look like much, but you're going to feel the burn every second of this 10-minute workout. 

Do you have a favorite abs workout or core move? Share it in the comments!

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  • 9
    Sorry, but you claim every level will love these, but there are no plus-sized people demonstrating, and as others have pointed out, not everyone can get down on the floor. Please remember, all Spark members are not young, flexible and mobile. - 11/27/2017   9:28:59 PM
  • 8
    Super article. - 10/29/2017   1:23:17 PM
  • 7
    Well intentioned article....but selling false expectations? - 5/12/2017   9:15:07 AM
  • 6
    Abs day?! For me, not so much. Many workouts now focus on working your entire core, so dedicating an entire workout can be a thing of the past. Of course there are exceptions, and amen to those who do straight abs several times a week. Just being mindful of engaging and recruiting your abs in your workout makes an enormous difference. I typically include a standing abs component at the end of my workout, heading to the floor isn't necessary. My fav is Jessica Smith's five minute standing abs routine. There are countless others...just do a search on YouTube to find options that work for you. - 9/23/2016   7:48:06 AM
  • 5
    I have all but cured my low back pain doing 5 minutes of core exercises twice a week, along with three well rounded yoga classes. Changed my life, truely! With scoliosis and a back injury I never thought I would be pain free again. I will keep this link. - 9/22/2016   10:20:16 AM
  • 4
    Fab compilation. I'm going to keep for reference. Thanks! - 9/22/2016   9:09:16 AM
  • 3
    Let me begin by saying I absolutely hate doing abs workouts particularly ones on the floor. One reason is because of my stomach hernia. However, I totally agree that it is vitally important and try to do some type of standing abs workout 1 or 2 times a week. Thank you for this article - 9/22/2016   8:32:51 AM
    Forget about anything where getting on the floor is involved. From the looks of it, that's all eight of these workout. How about a good abs workout for those of us with mobility issues? - 9/22/2016   1:45:26 AM
  • 1
    I used to be partial to a set of exercises I got from WCB which included birddogs. - 9/21/2016   8:27:58 PM

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