Top 10 Firm Belly Tips (of All Time!)
3 All-Time Favorite Ab ExercisesPlank Pull-In
My no-fail stability-ball exercise targets the deep (transverse) and "six-pack" (rectus abdominus) abs as well as the obliques. Begin in a full push-up position, with shins pressing into the ball. Pull knees into chest, then roll back to start; repeat for 1 minute. Pull both knees up to right elbow, back to center and to left elbow. Continue for 1 minute.External Oblique Crunch
My must-do move for slimmer sides? The external oblique crunch: Lie faceup on the floor, knees bent, abs engaged, fingertips behind your head and elbows out to sides. Walk legs out a few inches. Curl torso up, bringing right elbow toward right toes, then cross over toward left knee. Slowly return to start. Do 20 reps on one side, then switch.Pilates Corkscrew
Pilates is one of the best methods for all-around toning. My favorite move is the modified Corkscrew, which zeroes in on the abs, obliques, thighs, and hips. Lie back with arms at sides and straight legs perpendicular to floor, with either a Pilates Flex Circle or a stability ball (anything that adds resistance will work) between your ankles. Without lifting your hips, bring both legs to the right, turning your head to the left. Take a breath, then return to start; switch sides. Do 3 sets of 6 to 8 reps, squeezing the ring with your thighs. (To buy a Flex Circle, visit pilates.com.)
Originally published in FITNESS magazine, February 2007.
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