A tell-tale sign of a dedicated fitness enthusiast is their well-shaped abs. There is plenty of fancy gym equipment to work out your rectus abdominus (the six-pack muscle); there is a simple tool that can profoundly impact your abs-the resistance bands.
Resistance bands, usually made of latex, help shape and strengthen the muscles by providing different resistance levels. The band exercises for abs are great for targeting all the core muscles, not just the rectus abdominus. A planned resistance band abs workout can target deeper abdominal muscles, including transverse abdominus and oblique muscles. These muscles are essential for postural stability and rotation.
This resistance band abs workout article covers the best exercises, how to choose the correct resistance band, and tips for effective training.
Warm Up Before The Ab Band Workout
A resistance band workout might be low impact, but a good warmup session must still supersede it. It would be best to start with these warmup exercises to prepare your muscles and joints for a resistance band abs workout.
1. Cat-Cow Stretch
- Get on all fours, your hands directly under your shoulders and your knees under your hips.
- Inhale as you arch your spine while dropping your belly toward the floor. Lift your head and tailbone as you inhale. This is a cow pose.
- Gradually round your back as you exhale, tuck your chin towards the chest, and contract your abs. This is a cat pose.
- Alternate between the cow and cat poses for ten repetitions for two sets. Keep the movement fluid.
2. Standing Torso Twist
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your arms extended straight to the sides, forming a T shape.
- Tuck in your hips to engage your abs, twist your upper body to the right, moving your arms and torso together.
- Return to the center, hold for a second, and twist to the left.
- Repeat the upright torso twisting motion for 10-12 repetitions, gradually increasing the range of motion as you warm up.
After these warmup exercises, you will activate the muscles you target during your resistance band abs workout.
Resistance Band Exercises For Abs
1. Resistance Band Russian Twist
- Sit on the floor, extending your legs together. Wrap the center of the resistance band around your feet, and hold the other end of the band firmly. Slightly bend your knees and lift your toes while your heels rest on the ground.
- Keeping your back flat, engage your abs as you lean back 45 degrees. Extend your arms in front of your body and pull the resistance band to your eye level.
- Twist to the right side in a controlled motion, then the left to complete one rep.
- Do three sets of 15 reps.
2. Banded Bridge
- Wrap the resistance band around your thighs as you lie face up on the ground.
- Put your heels shoulder-width apart and as close to the hips as you can comfortably.
- Keeping your shoulder blades pressed into the ground, lift your hips high.
- As your roll back to the floor, maintain a deep scoop in the abs.
- Do two sets of 10 reps.
3. Bicycle Crunch
- Sit down on the mat with a resistance band looped around your feet.
- Keep knees bent, heels resting on the floor as you lean back 45 degrees to engage the core.
- Put your hands behind your head to support it as you use your core to rotate at the waist to bring the right elbow to the left knee as your right leg straightens.
- Twist your torso reversing the direction of movement to bring the left elbow to the right knee as the left leg straightens. This is one rep.
- Do two sets of 8-10 reps.
4. Banded Plank Walk
- Assume a plank position on your hands; if it's too challenging, you can be on your elbows.
- With a band wrapped around the thighs above the knee, stabilize the core by tucking the abs in.
- Walk the legs forward, bringing your knees parallel to the ground and your back straight like the straight-legged plank.
- You must alternate the lead leg to maintain muscle balance and symmetry.
- Complete two sets of 10 reps.
5. Hollow Body Roll
- Extend your arms straight overhead, lying face up on the floor with the resistance band looped around your wrists.
- For a hollow hold, lift your shoulders and leg off the floor.
- Engaging your core, roll your body to the right. Ensure your arms are extended straight. Once you roll to the starting position, roll back to the left. That's one rep.
- Do 1 set of 10 reps.
6. Controlled Rollup
- Sit on the floor and loop the band around your feet; firmly hold the handles with your hands.
- Slowly lie down, rolling your spine towards the floor. Push your abdominal in towards the spine as you move down.
- Gradually roll up the starting position in a controlled movement.
- Keep your arms straight to engage the abs, not the biceps.
- Complete 1 set of 10 reps.
7. Resistance Band Mountain Climbers
- Take a push-up position on the floor, balancing your body on your hands and toes. Keep your back straight and wrap the center of the band around the right foot, pinning the ends of the band in each hand.
- Engaging your core, pull your right knee towards your chest.
- Lower your foot to the starting position pressing through the heel.
- Maintain push-up position throughout the movement.
- Do 12-15 reps before switching sides.
Resistance Band Standing Ab Exercises
Next, we will share three standing ab exercises with resistance bands. While most floor ab workouts are great, standing exercises offer functional movement that mimics everyday activities such as twisting, bending, and reaching. This improves the stability of your core muscles, enhances balance and coordination, and adds variety to your resistance band abs workout.
1. Standing Knee Tuck
- Stand with feet hip-width apart, and loop the resistance band around your feet.
- Lift your left knee inwards towards the chest as you crunch your right elbow toward the left knee.
- Focus on touching the knee to elbow without rounding your shoulders.
- Return to your starting position slowly.
- Repeat from the other side.
- Do two sets of 10 reps.
2. Banded Wood Chop
- Stand with your feet in a split stance.
- Anchor one end of the resistance band with your forward foot.
- Hold the other end with both hands.
- Rotate your hands toward the back legs, stretching the band and keeping your abs engaged and hips stable.
- Do ten reps in 2 sets on each side.
3. Palov press
- Anchor the resistance band at shoulder height to a secure spot.
- Stand 90 degrees to the side from the band's direction, extend your arms, hold the band, and move away from the anchor until you feel the tension in the band.
- Slowly extend your elbows out while you maintain the tension in the band throughout the movement. Pull the elbows back in toward your chest.
- Do not rotate as you press the arms out.
- Do two sets of 10 reps.
How to pick the right resistance band for ab exercises?
When choosing a resistance band for an ab workout, you must consider some factors to ensure you have one that matches your requirements.
The resistance level is the critical measure for selecting a band. Resistance bands come in different resistance levels, generally indicated by color. Beginners must start with a light resistance band and gradually progress to heavier ones.
Also, loop bands are ideal for ab workouts as they are versatile and can be used for various exercises. Just make sure to check the material and durability of the band. A resistance band can be made from latex, rubber, or fabric materials. Latex resistance bands offer good durability and elasticity.
If you have no experience with a resistance band, you can confidently pick LIT AXIS, a smart resistance band. It is a complete resistance band kit with a smart element in the form of embedded Bluetooth sensors. A significant limitation of traditional resistance bands is the inability to measure their resistance or muscle imbalance.
With LIT AXIS, you have access to the LIT Method app that tracks your movements and muscle imbalance. It offers up to 200LBS resistance and is suitable for beginners and experienced individuals. It can monitor everything from reps and time under tension to total volume and muscle imbalance.
Safety tips for resistance band abs workout
- The resistance band must be in good condition; any wear or tear can result in snapping.
- Be careful during the muscle lengthening (eccentric) phase, as it's easy to neglect form because you stretch the band.
- Always slowly release the tension in the band during a workout for more effect and reduced risk of injury.
A resistance band abs workout is a great alternative to fancy gym equipment. You only need a band for a complete workout activating those abs for a stronger core. Resistance band exercises for abs are great because they add variety to your regime and keep you focused on improving core strength and posture.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can resistance band workouts alone give me six-pack abs?
Resistance band abs workouts can effectively strengthen and tone your abdominal muscles, but they alone may not be sufficient to achieve six-pack abs. You must reduce body fat to get six-pack abs, which requires a balanced diet and cardiovascular exercises.
How often should I do resistance band abs workouts?
You can set the frequency of an ab band workout based on your fitness level and recovery abilities. Generally, doing band exercises for abs 2-3 times weekly would be best.
Can resistance band workouts replace traditional weightlifting for abs training?
No. Exercises like banded crunches can be effective for abs training but must be more challenging to replace traditional weightlifting exercises completely.
Are resistance bands suitable for beginners?
Yes. Even resistance bands ab workout can be an ideal starting point for beginners as it is a low-impact training that reduces the risk of injuries. The adjustable resistance levels allow beginners to learn each exercise's proper form and technique.