- Tighten Your Stomach Muscles
- Tighten Your Tummy!
- 7 Stomach Muscle Exercise Habits To Avoid
- Flat Belly Diets
- Free Trial Scams
- Pilates Classes
- Your Busy Life
- Section 1: Busy Life
- Section 2: Busy Life
- Section 3: Busy Life
- Section 4: Busy Life
- Section 5: Busy Life
- Easy Exercise Videos
- Fitness DVDs for Men
- Fitness DVDs for Women
- 6-Pack Abs for Men
- For Women Over 40 Only
- Exercise Equipment for People on the Go
- Food Myths
- The Salad Dressing to Avoid Like the Plague
- Do 3 Day Diets Work?
7 Stomach Muscle Exercise Habits to Avoid
Exercise the Correct Way
As with all things, there is a right way and a wrong way to go about tightening up your stomach muscles in order to achieve a flat stomach. There isn't any point in wasting your time and energy by exerting yourself with the incorrect body positions and movements. It will not be of any benefit to the body if you're not working out correctly, and you will not see any signs of improvement. The worse case scenario will be to cause yourself physical injury.
1. Keep Your Knees Up
When you are doing crunches, make sure that your knees are bent and your feet are flat on the floor. Make sure that your knees are centered and pointed upward. Keep them centered and up, not leaning to one side. If you drop your knees to one side, you will be compressing your vertebrae, which can lead to a painful back injury.
2. Straight Leg Lift
This is a traditional "stomach exercise" that should be avoided. This exercise actually works the lower back more than any muscles in the midsection. Using this exercise can put strain on your back, and possibly lead to injury.
3. Old School Sit-Ups
Traditional sit-ups actually do very little for the abdominal muscles, but can cause great injury to your neck and pelvic vertebrae and to your shoulder muscles. Even when done properly, the strain is mostly on the hip muscles, neck muscles and neck vertebrae.
Momentum is generally what forces the body up and down as most people do sit-ups as rapidly as they can to keep the momentum going. Usually your body is pulled up with the arms and the neck, as the fingers are laced behind the neck. Obviously, this is not the point of the exercise. The crunch is a much better choice as an alternative to old school sit-ups.
Crunches can be just as ineffectual as sit-ups if done by themselves. Crunches must be combined with resistance exercises in order to be effective. If the exercises are not done in the right combination you could actually be making your stomach worse!
5. Too Many Reps
More is not always better, especially when exercising the stomach muscles. There is never a need to do more than fifty reps of a stomach exercise. If fifty reps is not giving you results, doing more than that will not help either.
As you build strength, if you feel the need for a bigger challenge, try a more difficult exercise instead of adding more reps. As with Yoga exercises, your exercise movements will increase with more difficulty as your abilities increase and your body becomes more limber, your muscles elasticity increases.
Believe it or not, how you sleep, and how much sleep you get, has an effect on your stomach exercise routine and your ability to lose weight.
Sleeping on your stomach should be avoided. It is one of the best ways to cause back and neck pain because it forces your back to arch. If you sleep in a position that causes back pain, it will make it much more difficult to work on your midsection in the morning.
The best way to avoid this is to sleep on your back with a pillow under your knees or sleep on you side with a pillow between your knees. This will help keep your vertebrae in alignment, prevent back pain, and allow you to workout pain-free in the morning.
Getting enough sleep is crucial to your weight loss and exercise plan. Without a full 8 hours sleep every night, you body has a difficult time continuing to burn fat while it rejuvenates and restores the body.
7. No Resistance
All stomach exercises need resistance to be effective, whether it comes from a resistance band, an exercise ball, or just gravity. Exercises that do not use any resistance, such as standing broomstick twists, will only benefit your waistline and not your stomach.
Waist twist, however, can be useful as a good warm up stretch for your trunk, and to loosen up the vertebrae, but they just won't tighten up or flatten those stomach muscles.
Proper Exercise Technique Is Imperative.
These are just a few tips to help you avoid wasting time and energy, or causing yourself any physical injury or suffering. Be sure to do your research before beginning a new exercise routine, and always consult your physician before attempting any physical fitness routine, especially if you have been sedentary for any length of time.