Try These 15-Minute Ab Exercises at Home for Instant Results

Workouts

Let’s not beat around the bush here, we all want awesome abs. Oh yes, having those well-defined muscles is a truly noble aim, but how can you get there? Don’t worry, you don’t have to slave away in the gym for hours on end to get this right.

Working your core could be as straightforward as doing some quick ab exercises at home each day. If that sounds like a manageable amount of exercise, you’ve come to the right place!

The Benefits of Doing Ab Exercises At Home

Before we get started and take a look at some of the best ab exercises, let’s consider why you should do them. Slipping extra home workouts into your everyday routine could make a big difference to your health and lifestyle. So, without further ado, here are just a few of the serious benefits that you may notice when you first start out.

It could help to improve your sleep

black and white photo of a woman's toned abs

Getting a good night’s sleep can be difficult at the best of times. If you find that it’s hard to nod off by the time you get into bed, you need to make some lifestyle changes. Why not try working out? An enlightening study from the National Sleep Foundation found that exercising regularly could help you rest at night.[1]

Surprisingly, this trend was true regardless of what time of day the study participants had engaged in a form of physical activity. So, if you have a busy life and simply don’t have the time to hit the gym, doing some ab exercises at home could be the answer. You can fit a short blast of activity into your day-to-day schedule quite easily. Give it a go!

It’s an inexpensive option

woman doing crunches in her living room

Staying fit and healthy is a lifestyle choice. However, it can sometimes be a rather expensive one. The great thing about doing ab exercises at home (as opposed to in a gym or as part of a fitness class) is that it doesn’t cost you anything. Plus, none of the stomach exercises we’re going to look at here require any extra equipment. You will need a gym mat but nothing else, making this one of the cheapest workout options ever.

It could help beat depression

woman doing crunches on an exercise ball in her living room

Needless to say, one of the major reasons many start doing ab exercises at home is to get rid of any excess fat. Carrying extra fat in your stomach area can be dangerous for your physical health, but also your mental health too. Research from the University of Alabama at Birmingham found that there is a link between abdominal fat and depression.[2]

Increasing the amount of exercise you do could help to boost your mental well-being as well as yielding some strikingly positive physical results. After all, anything that supports your mental health is worth giving a shot. Trying out some simple stomach exercises at home is no huge commitment but could make a big difference.

Try These Three Core Workouts At Home

Ready to work your way to a fitter and healthier you? Doing ab exercises at home is a fantastic and effective way to get into shape and start improving your health. You may already know some exercises that target your core, but the hard part is often crafting an effective workout. Luckily, we’ve got you covered with some great choices.

Of course, it’s important to remember that you’re an individual. That means that what works for someone else won’t necessarily work for you as well. With that in mind, we want to give you some options. We’re going to take a look at three different core workouts you can do at home. Each of these will take you no longer than 15 minutes to complete and you don’t need any extra equipment (except perhaps a mat!).

Workout One: The Ab Cruncher

The first workout we’re going to look at is a tough one. Prepare yourself. The ab cruncher will see you work your core and push yourself to your limit. Doing these ab exercises at home is an efficient way to get more out of your workout. From the tried and tested plank exercises to others that you may not have heard of yet, here’s the quick routine.

1. Plank

woman doing plank ab exercises at home on a yoga mat

First up, let’s start with one of the easiest ways to do ab exercises at home. You may have come across the plank before now but, if not, it’s time for a little refresher. This particular exercise targets your abs. While it may look simple, it takes a whole load of strength to hold your position for an extended period. Here’s what you need to know.

  • Targeted muscles: Abs
  • Repetitions: 1 set (3-4 reps per set)
  • Time: 2 minutes
How to do it

On a yoga mat, get down into low plank position. Your weight should be rested on your forearms and toes. Clench your abdominal muscles so that the pressure is directly on your core. Stay in this position for 20-30 seconds before releasing. You should repeat this process three or four times (or as many times as you can handle!) per set.

Pro Tip: If your back is arched, you’re not getting the most out of these ab exercises at home. You should make sure that you lower your back so that it is straight. It should be parallel to the ground. You may need to check and reposition yourself several times here.

2. Moving Plank

woman in plank position trying to tone her abs

You might already have the standard plank exercise mastered, but what about the moving plank? When you’re doing some stomach exercises at home, you can be sure that these will help you get the most out of your workout. Rather than staying in a stationary position, you have to move up and down while maintaining control over your body.

  • Targeted muscles: Biceps, triceps, and abs
  • Repetitions: 2 sets (15 reps per set)
  • Time: 4 minutes
How to do it

To get this ab-busting exercise right, you need to start in high plank position. That means that your arms will be straight, holding you up, and your weight will be on your toes. Bend your arms so that you go down into low plank. Then come back up again. This counts as one repetition. You will need to repeat it 15 times per set.

Pro Tip: Keep in mind that this exercise is not about speed at all. When you try it for yourself, concentrate on getting the movement right. It should be precise and controlled. Ensure that you tighten your core and hold it throughout the exercise.

3. Toe Touches

woman in white fitness gear doing toe touches

While this exercise may sound quirky and fun, it is perhaps the most difficult of the entire workout. As the name suggests, the toe touches exercises require you to reach and touch your toes. However, there’s a whole lot more to this particular exercise routine. This move will attack your abs and give you a serious workout. Here’s what you should know.

  • Targeted muscles: Abs
  • Repetitions: 3 sets (15 reps per set)
  • Time: 5 minutes
How to do it

You will need a yoga mat for this exercise. Lie flat on your back and raise your legs while keeping your core tight. Ensure that your legs are stretched out straight (or as straight as you can keep them). Crunch upward with your arms stretched forward and attempt to touch your toes. As you do so, raise your torso so that the strength comes from your core.

4. V-Crunches

woman doing v crunch stomach exercises on a yoga mat

Make no mistake, the crunch is the holy grail of ab exercises at home. Most people have already conquered the traditional crunch exercise, but here’s a way in which you can take it to a brand-new level. The v-crunches will add extra pressure to your core, giving you an altogether more effective workout. Let’s take a look at the basics.

  • Targeted muscles: Abs
  • Repetitions: 3 sets (10 reps per set)
  • Time: 4 minutes
How to do it

Start in lying position on your yoga mat. While keeping them as straight as possible, bring your legs upward. At the same time, raise your torso and crunch the top half of your body. From the side, your body will make a V-shape. When you reach the top (or as far as you can crunch forward), release and move your torso back down.

Pro Tip: When you first start out, you might find that this particular exercise is a little tricky. It’s all about control. Don’t panic if your legs won’t stay straight or if you can’t crunch far upward. It’s a learning process. Keep at these ab exercises at home for remarkable results.

Workout Two: The Twisted Routine

Want to try a home workout that’s totally twisted? If the answer is yes, this routine is definitely the one for you. Including some twists and turns in your stomach exercises at home is a quick way to take them to the next level. These moves should help sculpt your body and give you a well-defined look. The routine consists of three basic exercises. Let’s take a quick look here.

1. Side Plank Twists

woman doing side plank twist ab exercises

Hoping to get a toned body and a super sleek figure? Try out these killer ab exercises at home and you’re sure to notice a serious difference. The exercises target your external abdominal obliques, which run down your sides. Toning up these muscles and building some strength there will give you a lean and shapely physique.

  • Targeted muscles: External abs
  • Repetitions: 4 sets (20 reps per set)
  • Time: 5 minutes
How to do it

Start in side-plank position. Your weight should be rested on one of your arms, which will be bent. Keep your core tight and your body as straight as possible. Put your other arm up to your head and bend it. Slowly and gently rotate your torso forward toward the floor and then back up. That is one repetition. The key here is to make sure that your body is strong and stable at all times. Repeat 20 times per set and then switch sides.

Tip: The truth of the matter is that these exercises are more difficult than they first sound. When you start to try these stomach exercises at home, you will likely notice that you lose your balance now and then. Don’t panic. Keep at them and you will soon be a pro.

2. Twisted Mountain Climber

woman doing twisted mountain climber at home

Mountain climber exercises are a mainstay of many modern workouts. However, if you want to really target your external abdominal obliques, adding these to your roster could be a smart move. Much like the traditional exercise, these require you to get down on your hands and feet before you begin. You can try these ab exercises at home or at the gym.

  • Targeted muscles: External abs
  • Repetitions: 3 sets (30 reps per set)
  • Time: 5 minutes
How to do it

Get down on all fours as though you were about to start a set of mountain climber exercises. Next, bring one of your legs forward but, rather than keeping it directly facing the front, move it across to your side. Then move it back to the starting position. That is one repetition. Do the same with the other leg. Complete the set by alternating between legs and counting to 30. Simple!

Pro Tip: When you’re trying out these stomach exercises at home, you need to keep in mind that your body’s position is everything. Don’t make the mistake of allowing your back to arch upward or, worse, sticking your butt in the air. Your back should be as straight as possible at all times when you are completing these exercises.

3. Crunch Twists

woman doing crunch twist ab exercises

Here’s yet another take on the standard crunch exercises. By adding a few twists into your routine, you will find that you can target the external abs as well as your core. That means that you will get a truly thorough workout. Bonus: These exercises aren’t particularly hard to master and you can add them to any of your core workouts at home.

  • Targeted muscles: Abs
  • Repetitions: 3 sets (10 reps per set)
  • Time: 5 minutes
How to do it

Start by lying down on your back with your knees raised. Place your hands together and grip. Your elbows should be pointed outward at either side of you. Crunch upward by raising your torso and maintaining control. You could try a couple of standard crunches before you begin! Doing so will help you get your balance right.

However, here’s a little twist (pun intended!) to the regular exercise. As you move upward, twist your torso to each side, alternating as you go. You should be able to fit three twists into each crunch. Then release and go back down. This is one repetition and you will need to repeat it a whopping 10 times per set.

Tip: Can’t manage three twists per crunch? Don’t worry! You have to work to your own level when you’re doing any ab exercises at home. You might find that it’s easiest to start off by including just two twists (one each side) in each crunch. In time, as your skill level improves, you will be able to boost this and include a third twist.

Workout Three: Lower Abs Attack

But wait just a minute, what about your lower abs? When you’re doing stomach exercises at home, you need to ensure that you target all the key areas. Many women find that it’s hard to shift lower belly fat. It’s a common problem that the best of us have faced. Try out this lower abs workout at home and check out the huge difference it makes.

1. Scissor Switches

young woman doing scissor switches outdoors in a green field

When you first start doing this lower abs workout at home, you will find that some of the exercises are quite unusual. There’s a good reason for that. These are not the typical ab moves that most people are used to. Instead, they have been tailored to target a highly specific part of the body. You will likely find that it takes a lot of practice before you feel comfortable. Work to your own level and keep trying time and time again.

  • Targeted muscles: Lower abs
  • Repetitions: 3 sets (20 reps per set)
  • Time: 5 minutes
How to do it

Start by lying on your mat with your legs stretched out straight and your arms reaching upward. Lift your legs up from the ground while tightening your core muscles. Bring one leg upward and try to touch it with one of your hands. Lower it while doing the same with the opposing leg in a scissor-like motion. Each time you move a leg up and down, that completes one repetition. You will need to complete 20 repetitions per set.

Pro Tip: When you find that you’re comfortable doing these ab exercises at home, you might want to kick things up a notch. Another variation of this exercise sees your legs working in sync. That means that you raise and lower both legs at the same time. Doing so will put a whole load of pressure and strain on your core muscles. Stay strong and keep working it!

2. Leg Raise and Hold

woman doing leg raise and hold ab exercises at home next to her couch

Another addition to this lower abs workout at home is the leg raise and hold. These ab exercises are pretty much what they say on the tin. While they may be relatively simple, you should find that you really feel your abdominal muscles working hard when you try them for yourself. Practicing these effective lower ab exercises at home will take a lot of effort but, we promise, the results will be worth it.

  • Targeted muscles: Lower abs
  • Repetitions: 1 set (6 reps per set)
  • Time: 6 minutes
How to do it

Start by lying with your back flat on your mat, your legs stretched outward, and your core tight. Slowly raise your legs up off the floor. You should feel the tension rise in your ab muscles as you do so. All the power is coming from your core.

Next, for your first repetition, you should raise your two legs together as high as you can. Be sure to keep them straight at all times during this process. Hold your legs at the top of the raise and count to 30. Then release. That is one repetition. Rest for around 30 seconds before starting again. You will need to complete six repetitions per set.

Pro Tip: Since these exercises can be quite strenuous, we’ve allowed for a lot of recovery time in between repetitions. However, as you improve, you should find that you need less time before you can start working these muscles again. Tailor these exercises to suit you.

3. The Roll-Up

woman doing roll up stomach exercises at home

Have you tried these stomach exercises at home yet? If not, it’s time to give them a whirl. One of the biggest advantages when it comes to roll-up exercises is that they target both the lower and upper ab muscles. That means that they are an effective combination exercise. What’s more, you should have no problem mastering this oh-so-easy move.

  • Targeted muscles: Upper and lower abs
  • Repetitions: 3 sets (10 reps per set)
  • Time: 4 minutes
How to do it

Start in the lying position on your mat with each of your arms down by your sides (you don’t want to use your arms to aid you at any point during these exercises!). Roll your torso upward to come into sitting position. At first, you may find that this is quite hard, but try to focus all of your energy onto your abdominal muscles for the best results.

Pro Tip: When doing these ab exercises at home, there’s a golden rule that you must never forget. Each repetition should be controlled and precise. It’s not about ramping up the speed or rushing to get the set over and done with! Instead, you should take things slow. In fact, the slower you execute each repetition, the more you’re likely to get out of it.

Tips on How to Get Started

Now that you know about these workouts, it’s time to get started and blast those abs. Of course, sometimes the first step is the hardest. If you’re worried about trying these ab exercises at home or keeping your motivation levels up, here’s what you need to do.

  1. Set yourself a reminder each day
    We’re all busy people! If you find that you don’t have the time to workout, it could be a scheduling issue. Setting yourself a calendar reminder each day might be the answer. Completing these ab exercises at home should take you no longer than 15 minutes per workout. That means that you should have no problem fitting it in.
  2. Find a workout buddy
    One of the real reasons that some of us fail to work out regularly is because we find it boring. Should that be the case, there’s a simple hack you can try. Ask a friend to join you when you’re doing some stomach exercises at home. Research suggests that having a gym buddy could be the key to working out more.[3] Make it into a fun social activity!
  3. Measure your progress
    If you’re struggling when it comes to workout motivation, here’s something that could help. Start tracking and measuring your progress. When you see how far you’ve come, it will spur you on to work harder the next time. For example, you could keep an exercise journal, in which you record how you found each session. Get a notebook and get started.

Super Effective 15-Minute Ab Exercises At Home

Conclusion

So, what are you waiting for? Starting any of these core workouts at home is a great way to get the abs of your dreams. While the road will be far from easy, working out and feeling proud of the effort you put in is its own reward. The sooner you start this journey, the better you will feel. Take the first steps today and attack your abs!

References

  • [1] https://www.sleepfoundation.org/media-center/national-sleep-foundation-poll-finds-exercise-key
  • [2] https://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/10.2105/AJPH.2009.172809
  • [3] https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/bjhp.12139

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