When we work the abdomen, or any other muscle in general, we look for the exercises that allow us the greatest possible activation of the muscle groups that interest us. By making intelligent choices regarding exercise and executing them with the right technique we can maximize the results of our training.
When it comes to working the abdomen most people opt for those known as “traditional abs”, among which kings have always been the crunch (lying face up with knees flexed and hands behind head, we climbed the trunk Only to the tip of the shoulder blades) and sit up (in this case we climbed the trunk until we were seated).
What if there are other exercises that involve a greater activation of the abdomen? According to this study carried out with electromyography to check the activation of the different muscles while we exercise, exercises with abdominal wheel or power-wheel are the most effective in activating the abdominal muscles.
In the study, carried out on 21 subjects (a small sample), different exercises were examined such as abdominal crunch, sit-up, reverse crunch in both flat bench and bench inclined to 30 degrees, elevation of knees to Chest while we are hanging and other exercises with implements: on one side double crunch, crunch for obliques and inverted crunch with Ab Revolutionizer (an implement that assists us) and pike, knees to chest from plank and abdominal extension with abdominal wheel.
The muscles on which the electromyography was performed were the abdominal rectus, internal and external oblique, the dorsal width and the rectus femoris, and in all cases the exercises with the abdominal wheel occupy the first positions in terms of muscle activation.
Next we leave the three exercises with abdominal wheel examined in the study, so that you can include them in your training. Remember that if you do not have the abdominal wheel you can always make a small “fit” with rags placed in hands or feet, or you can use other materials such as fitball.