When bikini season rolls around, we all tend to get a little self-conscious about our waistline. Instead of whining, why not take action? We’ve got six exercises to help strengthen your oblique muscles (the vertical muscles on the sides of your abdomen). Try them along with a healthy diet for optimal results!
Suggested number of reps:2 sets of 25, or until you feel a light burning of the abdominal muscles.
Lie down on your back, leaning on your forearms in back of you. Keep your legs parallel to the ground, and perform a back-and-forth movement with your legs by alternately bringing your knees towards your chest.
Lie down on your back, leaning on your forearms in back of you. With your legs stretched out, perform a scissor-like motion from bottom to top (without resting your legs on the ground).
Chest Raise with Legs Stretched
Lie down on your back, legs crossed and raised, and arms stretched out in front of you. Raise your arms about 10 cm off the ground, lift your torso and touch your feet with your hands. Slowly lower yourself until your back touches the ground. Repeat.
Lie down on your back, leaning on your forearms in back of you. Stretch your legs out so that they form a 60-degree angle with the ground. Hold the position and lower your legs by 10 cm. Hold the position again. Lower your legs some more until they are raised 10 cm from the ground.
*Reps: hold the position for 10 seconds, or until you feel a light burning of the abdominal muscles. Repeat a second time.
+++ These exercises also work the oblique muscles!
Rotated Chest Raise
Sit on your butt, knees bent, and with your feet on the ground. Keep your chest at an incline. Rotate your upper body from left to right, with your arms stretched out. Be sure to not rest your back on the ground while performing these movements. Your arms should hover over your knees.
Lie down on your back, knees bent at a 90 degree angle, and your hands behind your neck. Keep your legs crossed at the knees. While raising your back from the ground, raise your left shoulder until your left elbow touches your right knee. Slowly lower yourself again until your elbow touches the ground. Then perform the same movement with the opposite side of your body (raise your right shoulder until your right elbow touches your left knee).