AB TRAINING by @musclemonsters
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The six-pack—or rectus abdominis—is the superficial muscle of the core. The keyword here is muscle. Like any other muscle, the rectus abdominis can be hypertrophied, meaning you can build bigger, more developed abdominals in the same way you can build bigger pecs. However, just like you can’t build a massive chest with nothing more than some pushups, you won’t develop neck-snapping abs from sitting in your room doing crunches every night.
If you want deep abs that “pop,” you’re going to have to train the abs through their primary function while gradually increasing resistance.
Understanding the functions of the abs is key to training them properly. Luckily, their role is quite simple: stabilization and flexion of the spine. Whenever we’re flexing our abs to stabilize our spine, or when we’re crunching, we’re creating tension. This tension will need to be increased over time.
That said, direct abdominal training is optional, and recommended mainly if you want to maximize the development of your abs. Because much of your training is probably made up of heavy compound lifts that involve a great deal of core stabilization, you won’t need to train the abs directly too often. Once or twice per week will suffice.
As for the obliques, they're stimulated whenever we flex, extend, or stabilize the spine, too. The obliques, however, have an additional function: rotation of the trunk. If you want to maximize oblique development, I recommend training them directly.
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