Most of you would just picture running on the treadmill when you come across the term ‘cardio workout’. But the fact is, certain cardio exercises are extremely effective in burning abdominal fat. You need to move all your abdominal muscles, hips and lats in order to work your way to those perfect abs, and cardio workout is the best way to do so. Check out these 9 cardio exercises that can surprisingly help you out!
1. Swiss Ball Push-Ups
This is a perfect cardio exercise for beginners to burn some tummy fat. Taking push-ups by resting your lower body on the Swiss ball makes it less strenuous for your arms, shoulder and chest, as your arms stay elevated. This exercise can benefit your core in numerous ways. If you don’t have a Swiss ball, you can even choose to do the push-ups on a raised block or bench.
2. Single Leg Squat Thrusts
If you are just a beginner, you may have to wait a few weeks to get a hold of this move. Start off in top push up position. Put one foot forward, as if you are about to start a race. Jump both feet off the ground;when you step back, your stance should be reversed. Keep repeating this, alternating both sides. This can be quite tiring during the first few times, so take things slow.
3. Power Knee Strikes
This is an exercise that can be difficult and painful at times. It is a bit similar to Thai boxing as it involves throwing your knees. Power knee strikes can do wonders to your abs, hips and glutes. They can help condition and strengthen your core. Knee strikes are also great for your pelvic floor, and will also lengthen your hip flexors. You can either choose to throw your knees in the air or target it at a bag or pads- both are equally effective.
4. Boxer’s Combos
There is no other exercise that can strengthen your core like the Boxer’s Combo. Experiment with various basic boxing moves- try throwing a few hard blows to a bag or pads- this can really work out your core. A jab-cross-hook can be effective in strengthening your core and making your legs strong. This exercise can melt your tummy fat away like magic.
If you are familiar with burpees, you will surely stifle a groan. But it’s the hard stuff that gives the best results. Start off in the top push-up position. Slide your feet forward and assume a squatting position; remember to not put your feet inside your hands. Quickly stand up by jumping and raise your arms overhead. Return to the same position and repeat. This exercise will make sure that all your body muscles contract really fast. Do the burpees as fast as you can to get the best out of them.
6. Jumping Jacks
A personal favorite of all football coaches, jumping jacks are easy to learn and extremely effective. Start off by standing with your feet together and arms on either sides. Jump up, raising your arms overhead in a clapping motion and land with your legs wide apart. Jump again to return to your initial position. Repeat as fast as you can. Jumping jacks will help tighten your external abdominal muscles or obliques.
7. Twisting Knee Tucks
Knee tucks are great for stabilizing and strengthening your core. Begin with the top push-up position. Bring your right knee up to your right elbow. Put your foot back down and repeat the same for the left side. This will help move your spine from front to back and also from one side to another. It will also condition your core to create force and then resist it.
8. Skater Leaps
Skater leaps should be attempted only by advanced bodybuilders as it requires great stability and strength. Also, if you are someone with knee or ankle problems, you better sit this one out. You need to make a line on the floor or imagine one before starting off. As the name suggests, you need to jump off from one side to another, just like you skate. Stand on the line, on your left leg and jump 45 degrees to your right in. Land on the heel of your right foot- make sure your hips and knees are slightly bent for better balance. Quickly jump off on your right leg and jump to the left side in the same manner. This is a great move to boost your core.
9. 180 Degree Twists
Known to be one of the best plyometric exercises, 180 degree twists can effectively help your belly flaps disappear.You will require a small ring on the floor to do this exercise. Begin by placing your right foot inside the ring and left foot out. Firmly place both your feet under your hips. Jump up, rotating your body at 180 degrees, with your right foot still placed in the ring. Repeat the same for your left foot. Continue for about 30-40 seconds as fast as you can.
So next time you need to work on your abs, remember that cardio is the key to strengthening all your abdominal muscles. Try out these 9 exercises and see which ones work for you the best. And don’t forget to eat healthy, keep hydrated, and take it easy.