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The Best Abdominal Exercise


Did you know that 60 to 70 percent of your low back support comes from the abdominal muscles (a.k.a. your core)?

What is the significance?

If you have degeneration of the spine, low back pain, and/or a history of instability it is still possible to improve your back.

I have found over and over again that with proper spinal adjustments, muscle work, and strengthening it is possible to improve both the function and alignment of the spine.

Today we are going to look at one piece of strengthening puzzle– the abdominal muscles.

Have you ever wondered, “What are the best exercises to strengthen the abdominal muscles?”

A study in the February 2006 Journal of Orthopedic & Sports Physical Therapy looked at this very question. The study compared people:

* Doing crunches — laying on the back, lifting only a couple inches off the surface.

* Doing short arch sit-ups in the same position — laying on the back, feet flat and knees bent about 90 degrees, but coming up a bit farther.

* Using abdominal-strengthening equipment such as ab rollers or ab slides. Some equipment is used while laying on your back and others have you on your knees sliding forward down to the ground with your navel toward the floor. The person using this equipment started on all fours then slid out and back.

The comparison study showed the abdominal work that had the greatest effect were those exercises where people were on all fours and either sliding or rolling forward, then rolling back in.

The second-most beneficial of the group were the abdominal crunches or sit-ups.

If you are experiencing low back pain and/or instability please consult with a professional before starting the any exercises involving being on all fours and rolling forward and back.

For more information please call Health and Harmony, PC at 303 670 1001

All Rights Reserved 2006 Health and Harmony, PC

Jason Steinle is a chiropractor in Evergreen, CO



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