Basic Exercises for Abs - With Names and Pictures

The abs are a unique muscle group of different parts and layers.

While there are several hundred different abdominal exercises, only a dozen can be considered essential, while the rest are modified variations.

Below, you will see detailed descriptions and names of the main abdominal exercises.

Exercises For The Abdomen – Which Are The Best?

An essential abdominal exercise is a plank or plank on the elbows. By doing this exercise, the transverse muscles of the abdomen and upper body will be included in the work. The correct technique implies the static maintenance of the body for as long as possible.

Some exercises, such as lifts, are ideal for working the lower abdomen. The abdominal vacuum is the best for working the internal abs.

Crunches are a critical abdominal exercise for the midsection. The mechanics of this exercise is to maximize the contraction of the abdominal muscles and bring the upper torso forward. This type of exercise is ideal for marking the famous cubes.

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Basic exercises for abs – with names

Keep in mind that when performing abdominal exercises, an essential tip is to feel the muscles in your midsection.

In reality, whether they are better exercises depends mainly on the technique and emphasis on the muscle work of each particular activity.

Here are the best basic exercises for abs with names.

  1. Bicycle abs

The name of the exercise is because it is an analogy with the mechanics of pedaling a bicycle. It would help if you started lying on the floor with your legs extended and in the air. Place your hands behind your head, then lift your upper body and push your right knee toward you. Reach with the left elbow, feel the abdomen’s work, and avoid pressure on the neck and nape.

Read more: Bicycle abs – Correct technique and benefits

  1. Crunches

Crunches are an essential abdominal exercise that is often done incorrectly. The mechanics of the movement are not in the body’s lifting but the maximum contraction of the middle zone inwards. Like trying to bring the chest closer to the lower abdomen.

Read more: Abs Routine for Women at Home

  1. Ball crunches

The main difference between regular crunches and abdominal ball crunches is that going down helps you keep the line straight against the ground. Lie on your back with your knees bent and hold the ball with your arms extended. Raise your head and shoulders off the ground and tighten your abs as you lift the ball. Let it fall gently as you go down.

Read: Routine with fitball – The best exercises to do at home

  1. Abdominal planks (or plank) on the elbows

The planks or planks on the elbows are an essential static exercise for working the abdomen. The main goal should be to keep a straight line with the body and form a 90-degree angle on the elbows. The training is carried out for a variable time depending on the level, from 10 seconds to 1-2 minutes.

Read more: How to do abdominal planks?

  1. Extended plates

Doing the plank with arms outstretched is a variation of the exercise, requiring additional involvement of the arms, back, and shoulder girdle. In this case, the press muscles must be kept in conscious tension, be sure to control your breathing.

Read more: Abdominal plank routine

  1. Climbing abs or mountain climbers

The English name for the exercise mountain climbers – can be translated as a mountain climber, reflecting the resemblance of movement to climbing. Unlike the table, it is performed in a dynamic mode; for this, you must alternately pull the knee towards the chest, naturally, using tension in the abdomen.

Read more: Diet to achieve a flat abdomen

  1. Boat crunches

Another abdominal exercise that may seem more straightforward than it is. Essentially, it is a yoga asana, requiring a good stretch. Lying on your back, tighten your abs, lift your legs straight, and balance your body with the middle zone. The movement must be equal to that of a floating boat, which gives it its name.

Read more: Static or Isometric Exercises – Best for Abs

  1. Abdominal bridge

The name of the exercise refers to the form of a bridge formed when raising the body. The load falls on both the glutes and the lower abdomen. The activity can be performed in dynamic mode with repetition counting and the static method for a specified time.

Read more: How to tone the buttocks? The best exercises to do at home

  1. Rotational mountain climbers

The starting position of the exercise is equal to the front plank. Then, with a feeling of the work of the transverse abs, you should try to rotate the body. The leg should slowly return to the middle, and you should repeat the movement with the other leg.

Read more: How to tone the body? – Nutrition and exercises

  1. Barbell crunches

One of the most difficult abdominal exercises (but also the most effective). It requires a good level of fitness, both the ability to hang on the horizontal bar and the strength of the muscles of the legs and abdomen to climb. The portions can remain straight or bent at the knees; the key is not to balance the body. ‘

Read more: How to reduce abdominal fat? – Diet and exercises.


The complexity of the anatomy of the abdominal muscles explains the existence of hundreds of exercises for this muscle group. However, only a dozen of them can be considered essential. The use of balls, weights, and other tools are used to increase the load (and increase efficiency).

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