How to Do Ab Exercises On Bench Properly

There are great exercises that you can do on a bench. Most people associate bench exercises with weight training or sit-ups. However, there are many great ab exercises on bench that you can do to strengthen your abs and your lower back.

To do ab exercises on bench properly you should ensure you are equipped with the following benches:

  • The flat bench: this is a long flat simple bench frequently used for weightlifting.
  • Adjustable weight bench: this is a bench that has a high weight capacity, multiple back and seat positions.
  • Olympic weight bench: this is an advanced bench used by professional trainers and athletes. They come with attachments for compounded workouts.
  • Folding weight bench: it has wheels and a space-saving design so that it can be stored under a bed or in a closet. It comes with an adjustable seat, leg extension, multiple seat positions and a 20-degree angle.
  • Abdominal bench: they are specifically suited for doing ab exercises on bench. They come equipped with an adjustable incline and foot rollers to lock the feet during exercises.
  • Preacher curl bench: this bench is commonly used for tricep curls.

These are the following ab exercises on bench that you can do:

1.      BENCH WALK-UPS

To do this exercise:

  • Get into a plank perpendicular to the bench with your hands one foot from the edge of the bench.
  • Pull your navel towards your back to tighten your core.
  • Move your right hand up the bench.
  • Move your left hand to meet the right by pressing into your feet, ensuring you keep your core tight.
  • Repeat the movement with your left hand.
  • Repeat twelve times.

2.      BENCH PLANK KNEE TUCKS

This is one of the most effective ab exercises on bench to help your abs.

To do this exercise:

  • Start in a plank on your hands perpendicular to the bench.
  • Bring your right knee toward your right elbow keeping your back flat.
  • Slowly return your right knee.
  • Repeat the exercise with your left leg.
  • Complete 20 reps.

3.      STRAIGHT LEG LIFTS

To do this exercise:

  • Lay on the bench and hold the bench behind your head.
  • Bring your legs to a 90-degree angle with your legs straight and feet together.
  • Slowly lower your legs keeping your low back in contact with the bench.
  • Lift your legs back up 90 degrees.
  • Complete ten reps.

4.      TUCK UPS

This is one of the more effective ab exercises on bench.

To do this exercise:

  • Sit on the edge of the bench with your feet hanging off the end.
  • Place your hands on the bench behind you.
  • Bend your knees and raise them towards your chest in a tuck position.
  • Extend your legs straight as you lean back onto your elbows.
  • Tuck your legs and press into your hands to get back into starting position.

5.      BENCH WIPERS

To do this:

  • Lay on the bench and grip the underside of the bench by your head.
  • Lift your legs to create a 90-degree angle to your torso, Keep your legs straight and feet together.
  • Pull in your navel towards your back.
  • Twist and lower your legs together to the right.
  • Return your legs to the centre then lower to the left.
  • Do 20 complete reps.

6.      SIDE PLANK CRUNCH

To do this exercise:

  • Start with a side plank with your right elbow on the bench.
  • Stack your right shoulder over your right elbow and raise your left hand straight up.
  • Bend your left knee and left elbow to meet.
  • Return to starting position. Repeat eight times and switch to the other side to complete a set.

WHAT MUSCLES DO AB EXERCISES ON BENCH WORK

The ab exercises on bench work on your abdominal muscles. They are made of the traverse abdominis, obliques and rectus abdominis.

The traverse abdominis is the deepest layer of abdominal muscles. They work like an internal weight belt by pulling in and giving support to your spine.

Bench walk-ups and knee tucks are ab exercises on bench that help work on the traverse abdominis.

The obliques are the muscles that help your torso rotate or resist rotation. Toned obliques show definition along your sides.

The best ab exercises on bench for your obliques are bench wipers and side plank crunch.

The final muscle group worked on by ab exercises on bench is the rectus abdominis.

These are the muscles that form your six-pack. They run from your rib cage to your pelvis. They help you bend forward and also help with aesthetics.

Straight leg lifts and tuck ups are best ab exercises on bench for the rectus abdominis.

AB EXERCISES ON BENCH BENEFITS

Doing targeted ab exercises on bench can give you the following benefits:

1.      REDUCE THE RISK OF INJURY

When you strengthen your abdominal muscles you reduce the risk of injury when lunging, running and single-arm exercises.

2.      MAINTAIN ABDOMINAL WALL TENSION

Keeping the internal obliques strong with ab exercises on bench helps maintain abdominal wall tension.

Weak obliques can increase the risk of abdominal hernias.

3.      IMPROVED BODILY FUNCTION

The abdominal muscles work with other muscles in the core to help with balance, stability and bodily functions.

The external obliques help with bending forward and bodily functions such as defecation, urination and childbirth.

Keeping your abs strong reduces the risk of incontinence.

Strong abs also help keep your back stable and reduce the risk of back pain during day to day activities.

4.      IMPROVE ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE

Many sports require a dynamic range of movement. Doing this exercise will help you perform better.

Having strong healthy abs will help create efficient mobility

ALTERNATIVES TO AB EXERCISES ON BENCH

If you don’t have a bench to do your exercises in, you can try these alternatives to ab exercises on bench.

1.      BICYCLE CRUNCHES

To do this exercise:

  • Lie down on a mat and put your arms behind your head.
  • Bring your knee up to your chest while rotating your upper body to meet your knee with your elbow on the opposite arm.
  • Switch to the opposite side to do a cycling motion. Do three sets of 12 reps each.

2.      TORSO TWIST

To do this exercise:

Stand and twist your upper body to one side back to centre then twist to the other side.

Work up to three sets of 15 reps. You can improve this exercise by holding dumbbells.

AB EXERCISES ON BENCH MISTAKES TO AVOID

Flex your abs every time you do this exercise Do not rely on your arms or hips.

Also, make sure you lower your legs with your lower back still in contact with the bench. If your back is no longer touching the bench, you are no longer working your abs.

When doing ab exercises  which require you to hold on to the bench, ensure your elbows point away from your head.

When doing the side plank crunch, tighten your abs to make sure your hips don’t sink.

CONCLUSION

Ab exercises on bench are easy to add to a workout routine and can be done three to five days a week.