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Best Ab Exercises from Around the World

We hit the hottest beaches around to bring you the flat-belly secrets behind the sleekest physiques.

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Jay Sullivan
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How It Works

To summer-ize your waistline in record time, take this around-the-globe tour of the top tummy toners. Do two sets of each move, completing all 10 in any order to target your abs from every angle. (Or pick a few to add middle-whittling power to your regular routine.) All you'll need is a single two-pound dumbbell and a resistance band -- and a credit card for that dream bikini you'll be wearing all summer!

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Afata

Trainer: Anna-Rita Sloss, creator of the Hot Hula class at 24 Hour Fitness

Targets: Ab and obliques

  • Stand with feet close, right hand on hip, left arm raised so bent elbow is near shoulder level in front of you.
  • Contract abs as you trace a box with hips: Softly bend right knee and lift right heel as you jut right hip forward (pelvis tips up).

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Paddler

Trainer: Paul Frediani, author of PowerSculpt for Women

Targets: Shoulders, abs, and obliques

  • Sit on floor with knees bent and feet flat, holding ends of resistance band (or a towel) with both hands in front of chest, arms extended and slightly wider than shoulder-width apart.
  • Lean torso back 45 degrees and lift bent legs until shins are parallel to floor.
  • MAKE IT EASIER: Keep feet on floor.

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Pisao Kick

Trainer: Leandro Carvalho, creator of Equinox Fitness Clubs in New York City

Targets: Abs, obliques, butt, and legs

  • Stand with feet hip-width apart, elbows bent by sides, right fist in front of chest, left fist near left hip. Lift bent left knee toward chest.

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Windshield Wiper

Trainer: Leandro Carvalho

Targets: Abs and obliques

  • Lie on back with arms out to sides slightly below shoulder level, palms down and legs extended toward ceiling, feet together.
  • Tighten abs and slowly lower legs together toward right as far as you can.
  • MAKE IT HARDER: Lower legs so right toes touch floor.

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Flying Side Crunch

Trainer: Viveca Jensen, creator of Piloxing and owner of V Pilates studio in Los Angeles

Targets: Abs, obliques, and butt

  • Standing on right leg, knee slightly bent, extend left leg out to side, toes touching floor.
  • Tighten abs and hinge forward at hips 45 degrees, back flat, then extend arms out to sides at shoulder level, palms down (like an airplane).

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Ax Chop

Trainer: Paul Frediani

Targets: Upper back, shoulders, triceps, abs, and obliques

  • Tie one end of resistance band to a secure post 2 feet overhead. (Or attach it to a doorknob and perform move kneeling on floor.)
  • Facing post, stand tall with feet hip-width apart and grasp other end of band in left hand, right hand on top. Step backward until band has no slack and hands are at eye level.

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Torso Tightener

Trainer: Melanie Rojas-Guzman, certified Zumba education specialist

Targets: Abs, obliques, butt, and legs

  • Stand with feet wider than shoulder-width apart, toes turned out 45 degrees, and hold one end of a single dumbbell in each hand, arms extended in front of chest so weight is parallel to floor. (Use a dumbbell no heavier than 2 pounds or no weight.)
  • Lower into a plie squat, abs tight.

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Freestyle Rainbow

Trainer: Dara Torres, Olympic swimming star and author of the new workout book Gold Medal Fitness

Targets: Shoulders, abs, obliques, butt, and quads

  • Stand with feet hip-width apart, holding a single dumbbell with both hands in front of hips.
  • MAKE IT EASIER: Do move while seated.
  • Squat, bringing dumbbell by outside of right hip.

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Pop Up

Trainer: World-class Australian surfer Kim Wooldridge

Targets: Shoulders, triceps, abs, obliques, butt, and legs

  • Lie facedown on floor with hands under shoulders, palms flat.
  • Tuck toes under and press through palms as you straighten arms into full push-up position.

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Attack

Trainer: Beach-volleyball pro Angie Akers

Targets: Back, shoulders, triceps, and abs

  • Lie faceup on floor with knees bent, feet flat, holding a single dumbbell with both hands so that arms are extended directly behind head.
  • MAKE IT EASIER: Do move without dumbbell or have a partner hold your feet.

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Belly Dance Playlist

Untitled Document

Playlist by trainer Lacey Stone, owner of Lacey Stone Fitness in New York City

California Dreamin' by DJ Sammy
DJ Sammy - Heaven - California Dreamin'
Telephone (Kaskade Extended Remix) by Lady Gaga & Beyonce
Lady GaGa & Beyonc? - Telephone (The Remixes) - Telephone
Hang On (Dave Aude Radio Edit) by Plumb
Plumb - Beautiful History - A Hits Collection (Bonus Remix Version) - Hang On
Bulletproof by La Roux
La Roux - La Roux (Bonus Track Version) - Bulletproof
Rude Boy (Wideboys Stadium Club Mix) by Rihanna
Rihanna - Rated R - Rude Boy
I Want You D.A.N.C.E. (Justice vs. Jackson 5) by ComaR
Down (Chasing Pluto Remix) by Jay Sean
Jay Sean - All or Nothing (Bonus Track Version) - Down (feat. Lil Wayne)
Replay (Jason Nevins Club Mix) by Iyaz
Iyaz - Replay - Single - Replay
Tik Tok (Adren-Lin Remix) by Dynamix Music
Dynamix Music - Dance Dance 4 (DJ Club Remixes) - Tik Tok (Adren-Lin Remix)
You Belong With Me (Factory Team Remix) by Housecream
Housecream - I Love Dance Vol. 6 - You Belong With Me (Factory Team Remix)
Imma Be (Workout Mix) by Chani, featuring J Rae
Chani - Imma Be (Workout Mix) [feat. J Rae] - Single - Imma Be (Workout Mix)
Sweet Disposition by The Temper Trap
The Temper Trap - Conditions - Sweet Disposition

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What do you think? Review this slideshow!

7531201378
smoberg69 wrote:

i must have missed something, because I am barely sweating. many of the steps were unclear or incomplete.

11/4/2012 06:18:05 AM Report Abuse
wepst3949455 wrote:

the plank photo "after" picture is incorrect.

5/1/2011 08:26:37 AM Report Abuse
makaNdoni wrote:

lets do this!!! dream come true....

11/15/2010 07:20:43 AM Report Abuse
frankmaximas wrote:

need real help am getting out of shape!

10/16/2010 04:53:24 PM Report Abuse
mdbeck81 wrote:

GREAT

6/19/2010 09:49:05 PM Report Abuse
mdbeck81 wrote:

GOOD

6/19/2010 09:48:33 PM Report Abuse

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