A beginner’s guide to abs exercises easy

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Bird dog
How to
Kneel on the floor with your hands shoulder-width apart. Brace your abs and lift an alternate arm and leg. Point the arm out straight in front and extend the opposite leg to the rear. Hold at the top of the move for 5 seconds before returning to the start position.
Why
"Getting your body as long as possible really focuses the exercise on your core stabilisers," says PT Greg Brookes. Perfect this technique for maximum muscle activation.
How many
3 sets of 5 reps each side
Make it easier Try reverse breathing. In the same stance, work the core by pushing out your belly as you breathe in and vice versa.
Make it harder Increase the time you hold each elevation.

Plank
How to
Start on elbows and knees before straightening your legs and raising your body. Keeping your head up, ensure your back is completely straight – this means no arching or sticking your bum in the air. Hold that position.
Why
"This is the ideal way to work the abs without crunching, which means you still get a lot of muscle activation without putting pressure on your spine," says PT Christian Finn.
How many
Hold it for 45 seconds. If you can do it for a minute without shaking uncontrollably, it's time to try some variations.
Make it easier Decrease hold time.
Make it harder Reduce points of contact with the floor. Try shoulder taps.

Side plank
How to
Lie on your right side, propped up on your elbow. Let your left foot rest on top of your right. Push up so that your body is perfectly straight. Hold the position before repeating on the other side.
Why
"This move targets the quadratus lumborum, which is a small muscle in the lower back, crucial for spinal health," says Finn. Focus on this move to avoid the common curse of beginner's back pain.
How many
Hold it for 45 seconds.
Make it easier Decrease hold time.
Make it harder Throw in some leg raises to start hitting a whole other muscle group.

Lying leg drop
How to
Lie on your back, arms by your sides and legs flat on the floor. Engage your abs and lift your legs until they are directly above your hips. Keeping your lower back pressed firmly into floor, lower your legs to the starting position.
Why
"The key is to prevent your pelvis from moving," says Brookes. "Resistance targets the rectus abdominus muscles (your inner six-pack) better than crunching."
How many
3 sets of 15 reps
Make it easier Remember GCSE physics? Lighten the load by bending your legs and shortening the lever.
Make it harder Take 5 seconds to lower your legs with each rep.
How to
Kneel on the floor with your hands shoulder-width apart. Brace your abs and lift an alternate arm and leg. Point the arm out straight in front and extend the opposite leg to the rear. Hold at the top of the move for 5 seconds before returning to the start position.
Why
"Getting your body as long as possible really focuses the exercise on your core stabilisers," says PT Greg Brookes. Perfect this technique for maximum muscle activation.
How many
3 sets of 5 reps each side
Make it easier Try reverse breathing. In the same stance, work the core by pushing out your belly as you breathe in and vice versa.
Make it harder Increase the time you hold each elevation.

Plank
How to
Start on elbows and knees before straightening your legs and raising your body. Keeping your head up, ensure your back is completely straight – this means no arching or sticking your bum in the air. Hold that position.
Why
"This is the ideal way to work the abs without crunching, which means you still get a lot of muscle activation without putting pressure on your spine," says PT Christian Finn.
How many
Hold it for 45 seconds. If you can do it for a minute without shaking uncontrollably, it's time to try some variations.
Make it easier Decrease hold time.
Make it harder Reduce points of contact with the floor. Try shoulder taps.

Side plank
How to
Lie on your right side, propped up on your elbow. Let your left foot rest on top of your right. Push up so that your body is perfectly straight. Hold the position before repeating on the other side.
Why
"This move targets the quadratus lumborum, which is a small muscle in the lower back, crucial for spinal health," says Finn. Focus on this move to avoid the common curse of beginner's back pain.
How many
Hold it for 45 seconds.
Make it easier Decrease hold time.
Make it harder Throw in some leg raises to start hitting a whole other muscle group.

Lying leg drop
How to
Lie on your back, arms by your sides and legs flat on the floor. Engage your abs and lift your legs until they are directly above your hips. Keeping your lower back pressed firmly into floor, lower your legs to the starting position.
Why
"The key is to prevent your pelvis from moving," says Brookes. "Resistance targets the rectus abdominus muscles (your inner six-pack) better than crunching."
How many
3 sets of 15 reps
Make it easier Remember GCSE physics? Lighten the load by bending your legs and shortening the lever.
Make it harder Take 5 seconds to lower your legs with each rep.
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