Rob Riches Trains Abs on the Powertec Functional Trainer
Rob Riches demonstrates how to make the most of your ab workout on the Powertec Functional Trainer.
About Rob Riches
Rob Riches is a Fitness Model, 2x WBFF World Fitness Champion and a personal trainer with certifications through NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine), YMCA & REPs (Register of Exercise Professionals).
Hi guys, I’m Rob Riches here with Team Powertec and the new Functional Trainer. With summer now and full swing everyone is looking to tighten, tone and train their abs. That’s why today, I’ll be showing you 3 key exercises to work both the lower and upper abdominals as well as the all important side oblique .
The first exercise is hanging knee raises and it goes like this.
Okay, a few important tips to take on board when you’re performing this exercise. The main thing about this exercise is that when you’re hanging, you bring your knees up towards your chest and finish off by curling the hips forward. That’s what really going to activate the lower abdominals and help tighten this troublesome area. The second point is try not to let your body swing back and forth, lower your legs down under a controlled tempo into hanging vertically again. Then as you breathe all the air out the lungs slowly bring your knees up towards your chest and like I said, finish off with the hip top. Let me show you one more time.
Once you’ve mastered those and you can do anywhere from up to 10-15 repetitions under control you may want to throw a side rotation in, like this to really hit those lower obliques. Great exercise to develop the lower abdominals.
Okay, moving on. Since we work the lower and the obliques at the same time, let’s move on to the obliques to really get the most out of hitting the troublesome area down below and for this I need to change the grips to a wide bar for some kayak rows.
This kayak row can be performed with many different attachments, you can use a handle performed commonly known as the wood chop or using the bar or a rope. I really like the bar because it gives me that stable position to rotate everything around my waist to get maximum movement in my obliques and moving all the weight with just my abdominal muscles as to suppose to pushing with my arms and moving my biceps and shoulders with the exercise.
Let me show you how to perform it. Take a wide over hand grip, standing parallel to the cable pulley, you pushing with the right arm where you’re keeping that fixed, it’s really the abdominals which is rotating around so keeping everything fixed and rotating around the waist. Also, breathe out as you push, pause, and breathe in, all the time keeping the abdominals pulling tightly.
For anyone out there looking to really tighten their waist this is the exercise for you. That rotation is really going to help pull in and strengthen all of this V sectional oblique muscles that will help keep that waist nice and tight. So it’s a great exercise to add in after the lower abdominals because the obliques are worked with many of these lower abdominal movements so to train them after we’re really maximizing their efficiency.
The next exercise I’ll be moving on to is the upper abdominals and we are saving this for the end because really these are the easiest to train. We use them in a lot of other functions and exercises that we do and also when you think about it, the body holds body fat around this lower portion, around the hips and the waist so it’s often harder to see better developed abdominals. Also the upper abdominals often come with easier exercises to perform. Henceforth, why we are keeping them at the end of the workout and for this one I’ll be doing high cable rope pull downs to really develop nice separation and depth in my abdominal region. Let’s set it up.
This high cable rope pull downs are probably my favorite exercise for really hitting the core muscle groups of the abs especially getting that deep separation down the middle – the Linea Alba. The reason is you really rely on that whole structure of the abs to pull the torso down and added resistance, now normally all you need is weight when training abdominals. Breathing and the actual range of motion alone is enough but when you are doing upper crunches of the upper region of the abs adding a small amount of weight just to overload the muscles ever so slightly can often give you that extra bit of effort to help you develop them and get those deeper cuts in them. Let me show you how to perform it.
As you can see, it’s really quite a limited range of motion. All I’m doing is keeping my upper arm fixed, my elbows about the same line as eye level and as I breathe out pull my abs so that my shoulders are closing that arch towards my hips. It’s not as big as you might think bringing the shoulders and elbows all the way down like that. The abdominals are pretty much fully contractive with that range of motion so focus on your breathing and keep the arms fixed so you not using the shoulders and arms to pull the weight down and really focus on that contraction at the end of the movement.
So there you have it, three key but very effective exercises to help you develop, tone, and tighten much of the abdominal region.
Stay tuned for more of my show for helpful tips with Powertec Fitness equipment where I’ll be showing you tips, tricks and techniques.