Let’s talk abs.
When we think of those pesky abdominal muscles, what we really want to focus on is the core. Much in the same way that the core of an apple keeps the fruit intact, the core of our bodies are our source of strength and movement.
The core isn’t just about the six-pack abs see you in IG ads. Your core includes your abdominals, back muscles, diaphragm and pelvic floor. These muscles work in concert not only to affect the way you look, but how you move, carry yourself, and prevent long term injury. Your core muscles have to be worked and conditioned equally but for today, we're going to focus on the abdominals.
The P.volve Method accounts for all 360-degrees of the abdominals, making sure to target the muscle in a dynamic way. Aside from the main ab muscles in the middle, your abdomen has essential muscles on the sides—the obliques and transverse abdominals—that are major targets in our workouts. Working on these through multidimensional movements sets a foundation for a slim, sculpted front body. It’s not about crunches and other traditional ab workouts that only focus on the outer most layer of your abdominals. After all, your core is responsible for all the movement of the upper body.
Your core effectively acts as a torque converter, controlling your body through space. This slows down the momentum of movement to prevent the pressure and energy from transferring into your bones and joints which can result in injury without control from your stabilizers! The more you can engage and activate your core, even if it's a 10-minute ab workout, the more control you’ll have in all of your movements throughout the day.
Consider a sit-up for instance. Think of how one-dimensional this move is — it only targets the basic functions of the rectus abdominus (the most superficial layer of the abdominals) and doesn’t do much for the upright stance. On the other hand, standing ab work is crucial to building a strong core that can improve posture, walking, and mobility in other workouts. This doesn’t mean that sit-ups should be completely erased from your regimen, but simply that many other things need to be properly incorporated along with them in the right ratio.
Any and all P.volve movements will help target the core from all angles, but the ones below hit the abs from all angles:
Step Back and Reach
Start in a neutral position with a slight bend in your knees, arms straight out in front of you at shoulder height. Step right foot straight back behind you, keeping right heel lifted and knee full extended. At the same time, lift both arms toward the ceiling, following your hands with your eyes, stretching through the abdominals. Lower your hands as you return the right foot back to start.
Repeat 8 reps, then switch legs.
Twisted Leg Lift
Start standing, with hands behind your head. Put soft bend in left knee and tap your right foot in front of you while slightly leaning back through your torso to elongate the front abs. Pull your right knee up to hip height in front of you while rotating your upper body towards the lifted leg.
Return to start and repeat 8 reps, then switch sides.
Step Back Arm Rotation
Start in a neutral position with a slight bend in your knees, step your right leg straight back behind you keeping your heel lifted and extend your right knee while keeping a soft bend in your front left knee, in line with your left heel. With your arms out in front of you palms facing each, other twist towards the front left leg as you rotate your left arm back behind you. Face back to center and step your right foot back to start.
Repeat 8 reps, then switch.