There are two important elements to achieving flat and sculpted
abs that you can flaunt in your next bikini OOTD: a good, healthy diet and a
solid core workout. Diet alone can help you shed off some fat around the tummy
area, but to get that beautifully sculpted abs—and for overall health, as well—introducing
core workouts into your routine is super important.
There are many kinds of exercises that you can do at home—yoga,
pilates, jump rope—but not all of them will specifically target your core area.
Also, some of the most popular core exercises like planking can be a bore to
For optimal results, mix-up your exercises by introducing
some personal fitness equipment that will help you explore more moves and routines.
Manila Athletica is an
online fitness store that offers affordable but quality personal fitness
equipment. The owner, Aencille Santos, is a fitness and weightlifting enthusiast
herself, so you can trust that she only chooses equipment for Manila Athletica
that she herself will want to use.
She shares three of the most hardworking equipment she has
for the core, and what exercises you can do with each equipment to achieve the abs
of your dreams.
Core sliders are some of the most unassuming of personal
fitness equipment, but they’re also some of the most effective in increasing
the intensity of your workout. One side of the slider is grippy for your hands
or feet, and one side glides easily on the floor to create what’s called an “instability
surface,” which forces you to engage your muscles the whole time.
Core sliders are also some of the best equipment for low-
to no-impact workout. This means you can level up your workout using only your
body weight, without the need for additional weights. At Manila Athletica, they
come in four eye-catching candy colors—lemon yellow, classic grey, strawberry pink,
and mint blue—which don’t just look aesthetic, but will also motivate you to
The best thing about resistance bands is how effective it
is an overall core strengthening equipment. The thing about abs is that you don’t
just simply work out to achieve abs; sculpted abs are just an effect of a
strong and solid core. And when you want to work your core, you’re not just
going to be working your belly. The core includes a whole set of muscles that wrap
around the front, back, and sides of your abdominal area, as well as your hip,
glute, and pelvic muscles. And doing resistance exercises with a resistance
band is very efficient in targeting all of these muscle groups.
What we love about Manila Athletica’s Summer Rainbow Bands
is that instead of the usual slippery and sticky latex, it’s made with an inner
rubber anti-slip feature that will latch on to your legs during workout. They come
in three strength variations to match your strength and workout needs—light at
25-35 lbs, medium at 40-50 lbs, and heavy at 45-70 lbs—and in beautiful summer
gradient colors for your workout OOTDs.
The Ab Wheel is one of the most
classic exercise equipment and really, it does what its name suggests: work on
your abdominal muscles. What makes the Ab Wheel a one-of-a-kind equipment is that
it trains what is called “anti-extension.” Anti-is what keeps you
from overarching your back, which protects your spine and builds shoulder
Get into a kneeling push-up position (or a standard push-up position if you love a challenge). With the core sliders on your palms, slowly slide your right hand to the front as far as you can while keeping the right elbow straight. At the same time, the left elbow should bend, as if you’re doing a push up. Pull the right hand back to starting position and repeat on the other side. Pro tip: If you feel the tension breaking in your core and arms, scale down by minimizing the movement based on your tolerance.
Begin with a push-up position. Keep your arms straight and core engaged, allowing your body to be in a stable straight line. With each slider on your feet, bring the left knee towards the left side of your chest. Go back to the push up position and repeat on the other side. This will keep your arms, core, and legs burning if you do it intensely for a hot minute. Pro tip: Avoid rounding your back at all costs to avoid strains. Keep your back flat by tucking in your tailbone.
Get into a push-up position with your hands shoulder-width apart, wrists and shoulders stacked. To start, squeeze your glutes and core and slide both your feet towards your hands, allowing your thighs to get as close to your chest and your butt towards the ceiling. Return to starting position. Pro tip: Don’t worry if your thighs don’t reach your chest. As long as you reach your maximum range of motion, that works just as fine.
Sitting down, loop a medium or heavy resistance band around your feet. Start with your knees bent and heels on the floor. Lean back to 45 degrees or until your core is engaged. Place your arms open on either side of the head. Using your core, rotate at the waist, with one elbow touching the opposite knee. Twist the other way to replicate on the other side, and continue to alternate. Pro tip: Slide your upper body higher to make this move easier, and slide it down lower to make it harder.
Lie down facing up and bring your feet closer to your butt, knees pointing upwards. Place the resistance band above your knees and put your arms by your side. Lift your hips as high as possible, keeping your upper body relaxed and glutes squeezed. Hold for a few seconds and lower down. Pro tip: to make this exercise harder, lift both heels or toes, instead of doing it with your feet flat on the floor.
Begin in a seated position with your knees bent and heels touching the ground. Put the resistance band around your thighs and grab a hold of one end with your hands. Engage and twist to one side, pulling the resistance band as you go. Twist and repeat on the other side. Pro tip: Just like the bicycle crunch, you can slide your upper body higher to make this move easier, or go lower to make it harder.
Place your knees on the ground and place the ab wheel in front of you. Place a hand on each handle and keep your arms straight. Roll out as far as possible without arching your back, and then roll back to starting position. As much as possible, keep your torso straight.