Resistance bands allow you to get a complete workout for your abs and any muscle group you wish pretty much anywhere you want. Bands weigh next to nothing and can be wrapped up into small bundles to fit in a backpack, tote or gym bag. The muscles of your abs stabilize your body, allow you to rotate your spine and torso, aid in respiration and flex your side so you can round your back and lean sideways. Moving in such ways while pulling against a band will strengthen these essential muscles.
Seated Cable Rotation
The seated cable rotation exercise, or sitting twists, involves sitting on the floor. This easy exercise works the three ab muscles including the obliques, transverse abdominis and rectus abdominis. Sit tall on the floor with your legs straight in front of you. Wrap a band around the bottom of your feet and hold the ends of the band with your arms straight in front of you and your hands clasped. Then, twist your shoulders to the right with your arms straight and then return to the center. Twist to the left. Do this exercise standing up to make it an intermediate level exercise or standing on one leg as an advanced exercise.
The wood chop exercise with a resistance band targets the internal and external obliques. You will need a sturdy object higher than head height to wrap the band around to perform a wood chop. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart a few feet from the object. Turn sideways so that your left shoulder is pointing toward the object. Reach your arms to your left side and grab the ends of the band. Then, twist your torso to the right and pull the band to your right hip. Return to the starting position. Turn around and work the other side.
Lying Band Crunch
The lying band crunch exercise works the rectus abdominis. Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet on the floor. Wrap the band around a sturdy object at floor level. Grab an end of the band in each hand with your elbows bent at a 90-degree angle next to your head. From this starting position, curl your back and raise your head, arms and shoulders forward off the floor and against the band’s resistance. Move slowly and press your lower back flat onto the floor. Return slowly to the starting position on your back.
About this Author
Sarka-Jonae Miller has been a freelance writer and editor since graduating cum laude from Syracuse University in 2003. She was a personal trainer for four years with certifications from AFAA and NASM. Miller also worked at 24 Hour Fitness, LA Fitness and as a mobile trainer. Her career in the fitness industry begin in 2000 as a martial arts, yoga and group exercise instructor.