Top 5 killer calisthenics ab exercises for faster results

Top 5 killer calisthenics ab exercises for faster results

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When we hear the word abs, the first thing that pops in our minds is Zac Efron’s rock solid, beach-ready abs. No? Just me? Fine, but one reason he was able to attain those are from the most important ab exercises.

But wait, Ab exercises have too many benefits.

These are not only for aesthetics. Benefits are well spread into function. Having strong abdominal muscles assist in providing good posture, balance,  translates into your sport and provides power for your compound movements. It’s overall good balance in our system.

Especially in calisthenics, the number of skill work requires you to have superb ab muscle strength and endurance. But why do it on a bar?

Hanging on the bar requires you to work your abs even more.

If your form is correct, the simple act of hanging already puts stress on your abs. Your core works to stabilize you on the bar and part of the core is the abdominal muscles. Gravity is not your best friend for these types of exercises. Plus, you’ll have stronger grip and forearms for hanging around.

Bar ab exercises are challenging and will definitely build your towering 6 pack. Just remember that form is everything and shift to an easier progression or similar exercise first if you can’t do the proper form yet.

Top Exercises to Maximize your Ab Gains

If you’re going to train your abs, might as well use the top exercises to maximize your ab gains in no time! Here they are:

KNEE UPS

This is the entry point in your bar journey. The easiest in this list but still a contender among all of the ab exercises. Your lower abs will do most of the work and contraction so prepare for upcoming pain the next day.

How to Perform

1. Grip the bar with hands slightly more than shoulder width apart.
2. Make sure your arms are straight and shoulders, back, hip, legs fall in a straight line.
3. From this position, bend your knees and lift your knees up towards your chest. The closer to chest, the better.
4. Come down slowly to the first position.

Coaching Pointers

1. Contract your abs and hip flexors from the starting position to the end.
2. Let your lower back slightly round as your lift your knees.
3. Throughout the exercise tilt your hips forward to engage your core.
4. Don’t use momentum. Lift and comedown slowly as possible.
5. Resist the rocking motion you’ll feel when your doing the movement.
6. Please Don’t forget to breathe. You’re still a human.

LEG RAISES

This is like the harder version of the previous exercises. Instead of bent knee, keep the legs straight. Aim to reach the top of the bar with your toes. The increased leverage puts more stress on the abs. Your upper and lower abs will work together to execute the movement. You should also perform mobility exercises prior to your attempt since mobility is required for the exercises. Don’t be lazy now!


How to Perform

1. Grip a hanging bar with hands placed shoulder width apart
2. Make sure your arms and back are straight.
3. Keep your legs straight and close. Keep your feet off the floor.
4. From this position, lift your legs straight up till the feet touch the bar.
5. Come down in a controlled manner.


Coaching Pointers

1. Contract your abs and hip flexors from the starting position to the end.
2. Let your lower back round as your lift your legs.
3. Throughout the exercise tilt your hips forward to engage your core.
4. Don’t use momentum. Lift and come down slowly as possible.
5. Resist the rocking motion you’ll feel when you’re doing the movement.
6. Perform mobility exercises so you can reach the top portion of the movement.
7. Please Don’t forget to breathe. You’re still a human.

WINDOW WIPERS

This is an advance and quite a challenging ab workout. Lower and upper abs will do work but your obliques will also come to play as you move your legs side to side. You can train this movement on the floor if hanging is too difficult for you. This is a difficult exercise, but don’t leave it be because window wipers can wipe your way to a strong and complete rock solid abs.


How to Perform

1. Grip a hanging bar with hands placed shoulder-width apart.
2. Make sure your arms and back are straight.
3. Keep your legs straight and close. Keep your feet off the floor.
4. From this position, lift your legs straight up till the feet are above the bar.
5. The back is rounded and almost parallel to the floor
6. Now twist your lower back such that the legs move slowly towards each side as much as possible.
7. Feel the side abs, back rotators, upper and lower abs tense while lifting and moving the legs.


Coaching Pointers

1. Contract your abs and hip flexors from the starting position to the end.
2. Let your lower back round as your lift your legs.
3. Throughout the exercise tilt your hips forward to engage your core.
4. Don’t use momentum. Lift and come down slowly as possible.
5. Resist the rocking motion you’ll feel when your doing the movement.
6. Perform the movement with control.
7. Please Don’t forget to breathe. You’re still a human.

WINDMILLS

Another excellent core building exercise that targets your abdominals, obliques and hip flexors. This is like a leg raise but instead of going straight up, it moves side to side.


How to Perform

1. Start by hanging from bar with overhand grip.
2. Make sure your arms and back are straight.
3. Bring legs up by creating a circle starting from left around to the right, then returning to side you started.
4. Repeat bringing legs up from the right circling to the left.


Coaching Pointers

1. Contract your abs and hip flexors from the starting position to the end.
2. Let your lower back round as your lift your legs.
3. Throughout the exercise tilt your hips forward to engage your core.
4. Don’t use momentum. Lift and comedown slowly as possible.
5. Resist the rocking motion you’ll feel when your doing the movement.
6. Perform mobility exercises so you can reach the top portion of the movement.
7. Please Don’t forget to breathe. You’re still a human.

KNEE RAISE KICK OUTS

It basically what it is named. As you knee raise, you kick out. This additional movement to the knee raise brings additional stress to your abs, making the move a lot harder than it already is. Bring this to your work out when knee raises becomes too easy.


How to Perform

1. Grip the bar with hands slightly more than shoulder-width apart.
2. Make sure your arms are straight and your shoulders, back, hip, legs fall in a straight line.
3. From this position,bend your knees and lift your knees up towards your chest. The closer to chest, the better.
4. Extend your legs away from your body to create an L position for a brief moment.
5. Come down slowly to the first position.


Coaching Pointers

1. Contract your abs and hip flexors from the starting position to the end.
2. Let your lower back slightly round as your lift your knees.
3. Throughout the exercise tilt your hips forward to engage your core.
4. Don’t use momentum. Lift and come down slowly as possible.
5. Resist the rocking motion you’ll feel when you’re doing the movement.
6. Please Don’t forget to breathe. You’re still a human.

Now that you have an arsenal of exercises for your abs, plan and set out your routine.

 

Treat your Ab Workout like any other Workout.

This means that you don’t have to do your ab workout everyday and only with high reps. Just like other parts of your muscles, the same principles apply to your abdominal muscles when creating a routine. Train with proper rep ranges, sets, difficulty and rest periods..

And if you’re aiming for that luscious 6 packs, eat well as you train. That goal relies more on your caloric deficit. But no worries, we got you covered regarding your eating.

Try it out and let us know in the comment section below what you think.

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