Posts Tagged ‘rectus abdominis’

How To Get Six Pack Abs

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

If there is one question that comes up time and time again, it’s “How do I get a six pack?” 

For every 5 questions I get asked, this is usually one of them.

Generally speaking, there is no definitive answer to this question, there are simply methods that work and those that don’t. But rather than attempt to answer it yet again, I thought a fresh point of view might be useful. And what better view is there than an established author on the subject of Fat Loss and abdominal development?

Theo M. Whittington is the author of The Fat Loss Handbook and he has not only agreed to give us some insight into how to develop your six pack, but he has also set up a fantastic deal for anyone reading this blog which he has broken down below.

But I’m sure you just want to get to it now, so I’m going to leave it to Theo to take it from here…

Everyone wants to know how to get lean, defined abs.. right?

Whether you’re a man or a woman, whether you’re 16 or 60, you’d like your midsection to look firm and flat. Today I’m going to share an excerpt from my book, The Fat Loss Handbook that shows you how to get great abs that you can be proud of. 

In recent years there have been two myths that have misguided many people, they go something like this.

  1. Doing sit ups everyday will melt away the fat and give you ripped abs
  2. Everyone has abs, you don’t need to train them –  Just lose the fat on top of them.

There’s a grain of truth to both of these but if you want to have well developed and lean abs, you must understand that these are incorrect statements. The process of achieving impressive abs is one of development and unveiling.

The development of your abs 

It is true that everyone has abs but does everyone have well developed abs? No. To say that you don’t have to work your abs and that you just need to diet is like a cast of actors saying “We’ll be there on show night, so we don’t need to practice.” It’s ridiculous, the abs must be developed.

There are three main parts of the abs that we will focus on:

  1. Rectus Abdominis -Your six-pack muscle
  2. Obliques -The internal and external obliques make up the sides of your abs
  3. Transverse Abdominis -This muscle lies beneath above muscles and acts as a corset to draw your abdomen in

The Rectus Abdominis 

The rectus abdominis is the muscle that is worked most by sit-ups, crunches and leg raises yet despite the ab training culture, this muscle is not strong or well developed in most people, this is evident from a glance around your local town or city, a trained eye will probably see many examples of lordosis of the spine partially due to weak lower abs. The rectus abdominis muscle acts to bend the spine forward, exercises such as crunches and sit-ups target the upper sections of the muscle whereas hanging leg raises target the lower part far more. Do not neglect to include a lower abdominal exercise, this area is weak in most people. 

The Internal and External Obliques 

The oblique muscles are also undertrained in most people, the obliques can be trained with twisting movements of the trunk and with side bends. The oblique muscles are very useful for reducing the size of the waist when trained and don’t thicken the waist significantly like many claim. If you want a visually pleasing midsection then some exercise for the oblique muscles is always necessary.

The Transverse Abdominis

The transverse abdominis is a very interesting muscle, especially in a world where expanding waistlines are a big concern. The action of this muscle is to draw in the abdomen, to literally make you appear slimmer. Although many fitness professionals will tell you that you can’t flatten your

abdomen with exercise, this isn’t completely true. You can’t exercise your abs and expect pounds of fat to evaporate but you can strengthen the muscles that draw your abdomen in so that your abs become firm and tight. This isn’t achieved with hundreds of sit ups, crunches or in fact any of the usual, gym- popular exercises. It is is done with an exercise called the vacuum. The vacuum isn’t an exercise you see too often and is an exercise most people never come across. In the simplest terms this exercise is ‘sucking in your gut’ but there’s a lot more to it than that. (Note: The exercise description isn’t included here, I’m afraid)

The Serratus Anterior Muscle 

Development of the abs wouldn’t be complete without a mention of the little known serratus anterior muscle. The serratus attaches the shoulder blade to the ribs at the front of the body, it is not technically a part of the abdominal muscle group but it strongly enhances the visual impact of the abs when properly developed so it is included here. The serratus anterior muscle pulls the shoulder blade forwards, it is the antagonist of the rhomboids and lower trapezius muscle. As the bench press has largely replaced the push up in many peoples resistance training routines this muscle is sometimes not developed proportionately with other muscles. The serratus is trained by flaring the shoulder blades at the top of push ups, shoulder presses and dips.

Complete Abdominal Development

Make use of these effective exercises to develop strong abs.

Hanging Knee Raise                  3-4 x 10

Abdominal Crunches               3-4 x 10

Russian Twists                            3-4 x 20

Straight-Legged Sit-ups           3-4 x 10


How to reveal your abs? For the next 14 days you can get The Fat Loss Handbook for only £9.99 (50% off) and learn effective strategies for a leaner body. I’d like to thank Mark for the opportunity to contribute to the Dynamic Core Solutions blog.