20 Best Core Exercises For Strong Abs

Time: 15 minutes | Equipment: Mat, dumbbells, stability ball | Good for: Core

Instructions: Choose one exercise from each group below, for a full core workout programmed by certified personal trainers.

A: Deadbug bodyweight, kettlebell bridge pullover, kettlebell deadbug pullover, single-arm floor press deadbug, glute bridge march

B: Side plank, stability ball rollout, inchworm, bird dog, bear crawl, stability ball stir the pot

C: Unilateral dumbbell march, kettlebell goblet squat, Russian twist, incline mountain climbers, leg lowers, Turkish get-up, squat to oblique twist.

Complete three sets of the indicated number of reps for each move. Once you’ve completed all sets of one move, continue to the next, in ABC order. Alternatively, incorporate these core exercises into a full-body routine.

1. Single-Arm Press

Why it rocks: “This move has greater demands on balance and stability because your core and body have to resist the urge to rotate when you use one arm to press,” says Kendter. As a result, this causes greater activation of the core and obliques, she explains.

How to:

  1. Stand with feet hip-width apart and hold a dumbbell in your left hand.
  2. Extend your right arm out to your side at a 45-degree angle from your body while you rack the dumbbell on right shoulder. This is your starting position.
  3. Brace your core and begin to raise the weight overhead, keeping your bicep close to your ear and palm facing toward you.
  4. Return to start. That’s 1 rep. Continue for 10 reps on each side.