The Ultimate MMA Ab Workout
It all begins at the core. No matter what type of workout you’re pursuing, a strong core is essential to your ideal body. You can ask any fighter in UFC, a core is the foundation to success in the gym and inside the octagon. Every motion you perform in your workout impacts your core. Sparring? You need a strong core for those twists in the your punches and kicks. Running? A tough core will help you shred those pounds. Cardio? Yep, that’ll build your core and vice versa. Once your abs are tight, then every muscle in your body will follow. Here are eight great moves that together form the ultimate MMA ab workout:
Hanging Leg Raises
Using a wide or medium grip, hang from a chin up bar, with your legs straight below you. Raise your legs until your body forms a 90 degree angle. Not ready to hang from a bar? Try laying flat on your back with your arms out to the side. Lift your legs 6 inches into the air, then continue lifting until they’re at the same 90 degree angle with your body. Lower them back down to 6 inches (without touching the floor) and repeat.
Sit on the floor with your feet flat on the ground. Lift your legs up so your body creates a V-shape. While holding a light dumbbell or kettlebell in both hands, twist from left to right, bringing the weight across your body, while maintaining the V shape.
This is just like a regular crunch, but this time you’ll be on top on an exercise ball. With your feet flat on the ground, lay locate the ball directly under your lower back. Tuck your chin, place your hands behind your head, and curl up off the ball. Be careful not to pull your head forward and strain your neck - the motion should come from your core.
With your back flat on the ground, extend your legs, and keep your arms at your sides. Raise your feet a few inches off the ground. Next, lift your legs to 90 degrees… but while you do it, cross your right foot over your left, then your left over your right, opening and closing like scissors.
Leg Raises, Part 2
While lying flat on your back on the floor, grip a bench or a heavy weighted item over your head. Raise your legs, and keep them straight up until they’re vertical. When lowering them, make sure they do not touch the ground.
Get in a push-up position, but extend your arms and keep them firm, as they will carry your body weight. In a rapid motion, move one leg at a time towards your chest, as if you are running up stairs (or climbing a mountain). Keep your arms stationary the entire time.
Get in a push-up position, but instead of your hands flat on the ground, lay on your forearms in a position parallel to your body. Keep your back straight and tuck in your stomach to your spine and maintain that position for a predetermined set of time.
Sit up and Throw
Perform a traditional crunch in front of a wall. Keep a challenging weighted medicine ball in your hands, and when you reach the top of the crunch toss the medicine ball to the wall. On the catch, lower your upper body back to the ground and repeat.
Build a workout from these moves
When you’re using these moves to form an ab workout, you have some options:
- Do each move until failure (when you can’t do anymore), take a brief rest (30 seconds to 1 minute) and move on to the next.
- Do as many of each move (with good form!) that you can in a set time period, then take a brief rest, and move on to the next move.
- Do a set number reps for each move, regardless of how long it takes you, then take a brief rest and move on the next move.
For an even greater challenge, repeat the circuit.
No matter how you combine these moves, you’re sure to start building core strength and toned abs. Get started training like a UFC fighter with a free pass for UFC gym.