Image: Courtesy of Ashley Kelly

Try This Standing Ab Workout An Olympian Swears By

We're obsessed with it.

Hate sit-ups or ab workouts on the ground? We all know training our core is important but there are times you just can’t get on the floor. Maybe it’s a sticky-floored public gym, limited mobility, or back issues that make getting up and down difficult. A standing ab exercise is great for individuals that do not like to be on the floor or those that find it uncomfortable to lay down and stand up from the floor. An individual can strengthen the core without the traditional crunches. We spoke to Olympic sprinter and personal trainer Ashley Kelly who has devised an ab workout you can do standing with high knees, C-Body crunches, knee to elbow reaches, and more.  Keep reading to learn how to do our favorite one! 

standing ab workout
Image: Brandon Erlinger Ford via Unsplash

The Best Standing Ab Exercise Routine

1) High Knees

Try to get a nice rhythm take your knees into flexion (raise the knee to 90 degrees) then to the floor, alternate both legs in place.  This exercise can be modified by completing marches in place.  This will help get your heart rate up and warm up the body for the workout

2) Abduction Crunches (Left and Right Leg)

Hand on your head or at your waist, keep weight on the foot that is on the ground.  Place a weight on the right leg while taking left out to abduction (away from the body) feel the side crunch then return to starting position, repeat until time is up.

3) Standing Knee to Elbow Side Crunches

Hands placed gently, side bend, and feel the crunch as you bring your knee to your elbow;  if you can touch your knee and elbow that is great, but get as close as possible while maintaining your balance.

4) Knee to elbow reaches

Hands extended out over the top of the head while extending the leg behind the center of the body. Take your body from full extension to crunch, hands overhead then knee to flexion.  You can add a dumbbell and hold it in your hands for an added challenge.

5) X-Body Crunches

Hands placed behind take the opposite elbow to the opposite as you rotate the torso and crunch.  Engage your obliques while maintaining your balance.

6) Standing Marches to Toe Touches

Stand with hands extended at eye level, march while bringing knee into flexion (up to 90 degrees) return to starting position then raise the leg to have your toe touch your hands.  Try to get your toe as close to your hands, then try to get closer each time.  Focus on progress and not perfection throughout this exercise

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