It is extremely important to have a strong core, in order to enjoy a healthy and fit lifestyle. Strong abdominal and back muscles are essential for doing everyday tasks. They also prevent back ache and help maintain a good posture. Here are some of the best core strengthening exercises that women can do, three to four times a week:
1. Flutter Kicks
These are beginner’s exercises that target your glutes, hip flexors, lower abs, quads, hamstrings, and calves. In order to do this, lie down on your back on a mat and keep your hands by your side. Put your palms flat on the mat, back flat against the mat, and look up at the ceiling. Now, engage your core, lift both your legs off the ground and alternatively kick them up and down. Do not let your feet touch the ground before you complete one set.
2. Seated Knee Tuck
This routine targets upper, middle and lower abs, glutes, quads, hamstrings, calves, back of the shoulders, biceps, and triceps. Start it by sitting on the mat, with your knees flexes and feet flat on the mat. Place your hands behind you, and keep your palms flat on the mat. Engage your core, bend your elbows, lean back a bit and lift your legs in the same flexed-knee pose. Bring your knees close to your chest and your upper body close to your knees. Now, lean back and push your legs away, and straighten your legs as you do it. Again, flex your knees and bring them close to your chest, and your upper body close to the knees.
3. Russian Twist
The Russian twist is an amazing exercise to get rid of flab and also strengthens your core. You could do it on a mat or a bench, and may or may not use weights. It is an intermediate exercise that works on obliques, rectus abdominis, traps, shoulders, hamstrings, and quads. Start this by sitting with your knees flexed and feet flat. Hold the weights with both hands and lean back a little. Engage your core, lift your legs in the same flexed-knee pose, and cross them. Start twisting from side to side, and keep your lower body and neck still.
4. Vertical Leg Crunch
The vertical leg crunch is challenging and super fun. It targets upper, mid, and lower abs, obliques, quads, hamstrings, rhomboids, lats, and deltoids. To start this intermediate exercise routine, lie flat on the floor and keep your arms by your side. Lift both your legs at 90 degrees from the floor. Then lift your hands off the floor and try to touch your toes with your fingertips. Inhale and go back down, exhale and try to touch your toes with your fingertips again.
5. Sit Ups
Almost everyone has heard of sit-ups as a good way to tone your belly. This exercise targets upper, mid, and lower abs, obliques, and deltoids. To do sit-ups, lie on the floor with the knees bent, feet flat on the floor, arms by the side, and palms on the floor. Cross your arms over your chest so that they are resting on opposite shoulders, or place your fingertips behind your head. Engage your core, lift your head slightly off the ground, and use your shoulders to lift your upper body off the floor, until you are in a sitting pose. Hold for a few seconds to go back to starting this position.
These core-strengthening exercises are ideal for women who want to lead a healthy, active life.