Six-packs? Give us a break. This year, people are drooling over a muscle you might not have known existed.
The transversus abdominis is that deep v-shaped cut in the abs of bodybuilders. Also known as “sex lines”, the transversus abdominis wraps around your body, supporting your spine, and the muscle’s visible edges are an indicator of a super-strong core and low body fat.
There’s benefit to honing these coveted markers of fitness beyond just looking good. After your shoulders, the transversus abdominis is the next muscle to engage during lifting exercises. Your v-shape might as well be re dubbed “lifting lines”.
So how to tone this holy grail of muscle? Simple: by building a strong core (focusing on obliques and lower abs, of course) and torching abdominal body fat. The 5 moves below, will get you started on your next project: your v-cut.
- Start with your feet shoulder-width apart and squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor.
- From the bottom of the squat, place your hands on the floor and kick your legs out behind you into a press-up position.
- Push up until your arms straighten and then tuck in your legs at the bottom of the squat position.
- Drive upwards through your heels until you are 6 inches off the floor and then repeat.
2. Medicine ball slams:
- Stand with your knees slightly bent holding a medicine ball above your head with your arms extended.
- Bend forward at the waist and use your core muscles to slam the ball against the floor about a foot in front of you.
- Let your arms follow through so you don’t fall forward.
- Catch the ball on its way back up and repeat.
3. Body up:
- Start in a plank position with you forearms shoulder-width apart.
- Plant your palms on the floor and extend your body upwards, ensuring your torso remains straight throughout.
- Lower your body slowly to the starting position and repeat.
4. Side plank:
- Lie on your left side with your knees straight and prop your upper body up to take its weight on your forearm.
- Brace your core and raise your hips until your body forms a straight line.
- Hold this position while breathing deeply.
- Then roll over and repeat on the other side.
5. Reverse Crunch:
- Lie on your back with your arms on the floor at your sides, palms facing down.
- Bend your knees and bring them towards your chest by contracting your abs.
- As they rise, roll your pelvis to lift your hips off the floor.
- Squeeze at the top then slowly lower until your thighs are perpendicular to the floor.