Ab & Core Workouts In The UAE

UAE Personal Trainers - 6 Best Abs Workouts Infographics
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Working Out The Abs & Core - UAE Personal Trainers Tips & Advice

Article Contributor: Andrew

Having a great set of abs in Dubai or Abu Dhabi doesn’t just make you look great on the beach or in the gym, stronger abs provide you with a strong overall core too.

Having a strong core can help you train harder if that’s your goals or can make you less likely to injure yourself while exercising. Defined, sculpted abdominal muscles is something many people work hard at but for some people no matter what they do they still don’t see the results they want.

There’s no big secret to getting great abs even though there are dedicated diet, fitness plans and even exercise equipment dedicated to helping you achieve the abs of your dreams. It takes work, fat loss and dedication to your training regime to get a really great set of Abs.

Of course a great set of abs doesn’t happen overnight!

However, with great training programs from a UAE Personal Trainer and the right diet you’ll be on track to improving your core and building a great set of abs for the summer.

Table Of Contents

Don't shy away from your core

Quite often I will monitor other people’s workouts around me in the gym in Abu Dhabi, intrigued by the process of how they plan their training; mostly to help me grow as a trainer by comparing my own methods to others.

But too frequently I see so many people shy away from training their core or lack of training by simply performing high repetition crunches or sit ups and calling it a day. Most people I speak to aren’t actually aware of the important core musculature surrounding their spinal column and unfortunately the only knowledge they have of their core is the typical ‘6 pack abs’.

Training your core efficiently is much more than your standard crunches or sit-ups or holding a plank for as long as you can. It holds so many more aspects in which we need to make sure we train.

The importance of training your core

The importance of core is in the word itself, when you look at your training as a whole, the main base and center upon which all Exercise at home begins from is ‘the core’. It provides a solid framework for our spinal column and helps us from developing particular spinal deviations such as an increased lumbar curvature when the core is trained correctly.

Training our core is especially important as you become older as it is your main base of support and balance. So if you have a weak core as you get older you will be more susceptible to falls, thus increasing your chance for injury. 

This isn’t just limited to older people either, for anyone with a weak core this will also result in poor balance and base of support.

Not to mention if you are an avid sports person having a strong core musculature will help benefit you in key areas of your fitness. Such as power in swinging or kicking movements, improved overall conditioning in contact sports or even as simple as a healthy posture.

I strongly suggest before your next gym workout to Google some great balanced core workouts. I’m sure you will be surprised and quite pleased with the range of exercises you can learn

Ab building exercises and diet

The recipe for a wash board six pack isn’t all that complicated.

You just need a great Abs workout routine, a nutrient-rich diet and a will to go against the late-night pizza cravings.

Almost every person who is involved in fitness and bodybuilding in Dubai and Abu Dhabi dreams of having six pack abs.

Not only are they very appealing to the eye (they represent the perfect physique), they also play a huge role when it comes to strength exercises. 

Every heavy compound exercise/movement requires core strength. And core strength comes from the abs.

Your nutrition matters

Reducing your calorie intake below maintained will lead to fat loss, resulting in a flatter stomach. Having visible abs depends on how low your body fat is and your genetics.

Some men and women in the UAE might have abs at 20% body fat, for some it may take until 9%, again everyone is different.

To develop a toned and defined stomach a diet is essential and is the key to losing belly fat. If you are overweight, it will take time to lose the excess stomach fat to be able to develop a toned mid-section.

Ab exercises help build a strong core, however doing 1000 crunches each day won’t help target the belly fat as you cannot spot reduce from one particular area.

Find a qualified nutritionist or personal trainer in Dubai with weight loss experience who can help create a sustainable fat loss diet, pair this with a gym program and this will help burn fat and tone up the stomach.

Be patient

Results take time and there is no avoiding that. It comes down to the individuals starting point, fitness levels, previous training, diet and bodyfat levels.

For someone who has done sports most of their life and eats relatively well, it maybe only take a matter of months to build a strong core.

However for a mother of 3, who has never done any form of exercise before, it can take up to one year to see positive results.

Again, it varies from person to person in the UAE, everyone is different and you should always dedicate at least 6 months to build a strong core.

 

The best exercise methods for abs and your core

Ab Exercise Type 1 – Plank

The plank is one of the easiest and most basic exercises you can do to tone your abs. This is an exercise that you can’t find an excuse not to do.

It requires no equipment and minimal time spent doing it. The plank is an isometric hold that really focuses on the core. It targets all areas of the abs (lower, upper, middle).

It’s very easy to manipulate the degree of difficulty of this exercise. If a regular plank is too easy for you, lift an arm, or a leg—or an arm and a leg. Still too easy?

Try enduring more in time! The more you up the difficulty of the exercises the more development of the abs you’ll get.

 

How To Do Plank
Simply put your hands shoulder width in the position that you do crunches. Ground your toes into the floor and squeeze the glutes to stabilize the body. Neutralize the neck and spine by looking at a spot on the floor about a foot beyond the hands.

 

Ab Exercise Type 2 – Mountain Climbers

You see them in all gyms in the UAE – Mountain Climbers are an awesome exercise that gets you heart rate up fast while also firing the core and other muscle groups in the body- deltoids, chest, quads, hamstrings and hip abductors.

This is the perfect exercise in Dubai and Abu Dhabi for burning fat because of the high heart rate (the best fat loss results are achieved while the heart operates at 130bpm) therefore burning of calories and for building a strong core.

This is an exercise that also doesn’t require any equipment and special skills.

 

How To Do Mountain Climbers:
From a high plank position, with your body straight and hips level, lift right foot and draw right knee to chest between your hands. As you return right leg to plank, lift left foot and draw left knee to chest between your hands.

Continue to alternate as quickly as possible, keeping your core tight and without hiking your hips.

 

Ab Exercise Type 3 – Straight Leg Raises

This is another exercise that you can do with no equipment in the UAE, you just need a floor to lie on. Although it targets your whole core it’s a good exercise for your lower abs also.

If you have any lower back pain don’t do this movement.

 

How To Do Straight Leg Raises:
From a face up position on the floor, place hands under your low back and brace your core.

Lift straight legs slowly off the ground, bringing them to 90-degrees, then slowly lower them back to the ground.

 

Ab Exercise Type 4 – Kneeling Cable Crunch

This exercise requires a cable machine – your gym or personal trainer in Dubai can provide information on accessing cable machines in your area. The primary strengths of this crunch variation exercise are its versatility—you can do it on any cable stack—and the way it allows you to use any level of resistance to train for a target rep range. This exercise targets your upper and middle area of the abdominals.

 

How to do a Kneeling Cable Crunch:
To perform a kneeling cable crunch you can begin by kneeling and facing towards or away from the pulley. The aim is to maintain tension and not rest at either end. Bend at your hips and avoid extending your legs. Your knees shouldn’t come into the movement as you may be tempted to propel yourself with your legs when you begin to fatigue. Your head shouldn’t touch the floor and the weights should not touch when you come to straighten again.

 

Ab Exercise Type 5 – Hanging Leg Raise Or Knee Raise

To do a Hanging leg/knee raise you just need a bar that you can hang from. The goal of the exercise is to contract your abdominals as much as possible without involving the quads too much.

This exercise targets the lower abs and also a bit of the quads. It requires balance and constant tension.

 

How to do Hanging Leg Raise Or Knee Raise:
Hang from a pull-up bar with an overhand grip and your hands roughly shoulder-width apart. Flex your hips and bend your knees, holding them above your hips in front of your torso. In a controlled fashion, roll your torso upwards, bringing your knees toward your chin. Slowly reverse this motion without allowing your knees to become un-tucked from your body. Don’t use momentum at any point.

 

Ab Exercise Type 6 – Squat

Wait what? A leg exercise for ab development? Yes! Everyone who has done heavy squats knows how much they destroy your core. Both front and back squats force your abs and spinal erectors to work overtime to maintain a neutral, upright position.

 

How To Do Squats:
Stand straight with feet hip-width apart, tighten your stomach muscles, lower down, as if sitting.

It takes time.....

Most quick fixes provide results that only last in the short term. Going on crash diets and excessive training regimes will only lead to burn out and weight gain if it is not maintained.

Remember having clear visible abs takes a lot of time and dedication.

However if this is your goal, sit with your trainer and make a clear plan for 3 months of training and diet programs.

Set yourself clear goals of what you want to achieve and how you are going to do it.

The best advice would be to find a qualified trainer and nutritionist who can help fast track your results allowing you to gain abs quicker!

Remember to be realistic about the results, having abs take time and without the right guidance, they can be difficult to maintain.

In summary

Building a great set of abs in Dubai does take time. Remember to follow some simple training rules and you get there eventually

Plan ahead – abs don’t appear overnight

  • Abs start in the kitchen so get your diet in order

  • Fat loss in the stomach area will help your abs be more ‘visible’

  • Use a specialist body toning and nutrition coach for best results

  • Patience, Patience, Patience

Find the best male or female personal trainer in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman or RAK.