The Best Exercises to Build Oblique Muscles
Your oblique muscles may be hidden beneath your love handles, but they are the ones that give you that sleek shape you want – the one that makes the ladies go crazy over Adam Levine. Working out your oblique muscles will help to firm up those abs, and will help you to lose weight around your middle. Here are the 5 best exercises to build oblique muscles and get rid of that muffin top once and for all:
This is a fairly simple exercise to do, and all you’ll need is a Yoga mat on the floor. It will require a bit of effort at first, but you should have no problem getting up to 30 or more reps. If you do this one right, it will burn your sides and build oblique muscles nicely!
Make sure to focus on isolating the side muscles as you crunch up. Your stomach will come into play with this exercise, but make sure that you don’t use your back or your arms to lift. The more you can isolate the muscles, the better it will tone your muscles.
Dumbbell Side Bends
For this workout, you will need fairly heavy dumbbells. The heavier the weight, the more effect the workout will have. Start out with a little bit of weight at first, but it will be fairly easy for you to work up to heavier weights as your side muscles get stronger.
Be careful with this exercise, as you can strain the muscles if you bend to the side too fast. Your oblique muscles prevent you from bending too far, and you can pull the sheet of muscle on the opposite side of your bend if you move too quickly.
Medicine Ball Side Throw
This can be a lot of fun, but the medicine ball will make it a good workout. You’ll need a fairly heavy ball, and a wall will be required. Simply wind up and throw properly, and your side muscles will get a great workout!
Catching the heavy ball can strain your wrists, so make sure that you catch with your arms if the ball is heavy. Use just your torso for the twist and throw, and focus on keeping your arms, shoulders, and back out of the equation.
You’ll need an exercise bench for this workout, and you will need to set the angle to the decline setting. Make sure that you have a way to lock your ankles around the bench to hold yourself in place, or have a friend hold your ankles.
Go slow with this one. Your back and stomach are both going to be straining with this one, so maintain the proper form and breathe deeply as you twist. If you don’t, you could cause yourself to get a hernia from the strain.
Double Side Crunch
This is going to be one of the toughest body weight exercises that you will do to build oblique muscles, so take it slow at first. Make sure that you’re getting the crunch up high enough to bring the side muscles into use.
If you can’t get it right, go slow and do fewer reps. You don’t want to jerk with crunches, as that can strain muscles and cause injuries. Instead, focus on doing it slowly, getting each crunch right. Even if you just do a few, it’s better than doing a lot incorrectly.
- For strength gain, do 4 to 6 reps per set.
- For general fitness, do 12 to 15 reps per set.
- For endurance and weight loss, do 20 to 25 reps per set.