Most people dream of having a flat stomach. It is true that hardcore exercises and the right diet will help you get rid of tummy fat but the question is does flexing your abs help? While most of us wish it could be as easy as that, let’s take a deeper look at what flexing your abs help with, and if you do it throughout the day, can it help you get a flat stomach?
What is Flexing and How does it Help?
Before we get to whether flexing your abs helps, let’s first understand what flexing is and its benefits if any. Muscle flexing, also known as muscle contraction, is a way to build strength by creating tension that temporarily contracts the muscle fibers.
Muscle training exercises called isometric exercises strengthens the muscles by keeping them still and contracting them while they face resistance. This tension in the muscles can be created in various ways and offers multiple benefits.
Some benefits of muscle-flexing through isometric exercises include:
- Lowering of systolic and diastolic blood pressure
- Allows strength training during painful traditional muscle movements
- Improving balance and core stability
- Can be done with resistance bands or dumbbells without requiring much space and equipment
Isometric exercises include planks, glute bridges and wall sits among others. Including these in your workout can improve strength training. However, since they only strengthen the muscle in one position, as it is being kept still a wide range of positions and motions may be required for a comprehensive workout of a particular muscle.
Does Flexing Your Abs Help?
Now let’s find out whether flexing your abs helps. Who doesn’t want a flat stomach but is it true that flexing your abs all day will help you get it? Well, it may keep your muscles engaged but it does not guarantee a core workout. Flexing your abs throughout the day can help tone the muscles of your abdominal wall however, you can’t expect it to get rid of stomach fat for you or give you the six-packs you desire.
How to Tone Stomach Muscles
To keep your stomach muscles toned, you can do stomach tightening exercises. According to studies published in the Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation and Journal of Physical Therapy Science, hollowing and abdominal bracing can help increase abdominal muscle mass.
While you do abdominal exercises, consciously clenching your stomach muscles can help enhance muscle fibers and add to your progress. Hollowing is also found to be effective against lower back pain. You can do it while lying down, standing, or sitting.
To do this move, breathe shallowly and draw your navel deep into the lumbar region. Contract your stomach slowly avoiding any movement of the pelvis and chest.
Another way to strengthen your stomach muscles is through abdominal bracing. To do this move, simply contract and stiffen your midriff as if someone’s going to punch you in the gut.
Abdominal bracing is a key component in exercises such as planks and pushups. This exercise can also be performed while lying down, standing, or sitting and works both deep and superficial muscles.
You can also strengthen your ab muscles while walking or during other daily activities. To do this, simply pull your navel towards the spine to work the transverse abs. These run from the side to the front of the abs.
As you do this in your routine, it will become a habit and you will start doing it unconsciously, thus engaging and strengthening your ab muscles to get a toned stomach.