Abdominal Muscles Anatomy

absIn order to find the right training and to perform the exercises properly, it is important to know what are the abdominal muscles. These are the rectus abdominis, the external and internal obliques and the transverse abdominis.

Ab muscles are different from the other muscles as they are postural ones that support the spine and keep the stability of the torso. That means they are used a lot, and they are made up from special fibers.

While we train our legs, biceps or chest once or twice week to see results, abs can be and should be trained more often to see results. We should stimulate them usually, if we want to get a flat stomach. Therefore, we need to do ab training 3-4 times a week.

Moreover, you have to understand that, by doing one sort of exercise such crunches or sit-ups, it is impossible to train all the four abdominal muscles at once. If you want to have good-looking midsection, you should do a wide variety of exercises.

It is also important how many reps we do. Typically, 15 – 30 reps are suggested depends on the exercise. This number of repetition helps to strengthen and tone the muscles effectively and at the same time burn belly fat. In most of the cases, there is no need to use weights since bodyweight exercises offer enough resistance for training.

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Now let’s see the region of abdomen separately and what sorts of workouts are the best for them.


Rectus Abdominus

This is the biggest muscle that covers the stomach and the one that we can turn to six pack. We can separate it into two parts, the lower and upper abdomen. It is responsible for moving your ribcage towards the pelvis. It is the most used muscles of the abdominal wall.

The lower abs can be trained with the following exercises the best: leg or knee raise, reverse crunch, normal or bench sit-ups, plank or even using an ab slide equipment.

[label type=”success”]Related[/label] You can find special workouts for lower abs here.

Upper portion can be trained with: normal or weighted crunches.

[label type=”success”]Related[/label] Discover how to workout your upper abs here.

External and Internal Obliques

The oblique muscles can be found on the right and left side of the abdominis. The internal obliques can be seen. These ab muscles are responsible for the rotation and flexion of the torso. If you train oblique effectively, you will have slimmer hips and waist.

Best internal and external oblique exercises are crossover crunch, Russian twist and various side planks.

[label type=”success”]Related[/label] Learn a lot of obliques exercises here.

Transverse Abdominis

It is under the rectus abdominis. The main function of it is to initiate the ab compression. It is used a lot when we do core exercises such as planks.

It can be trained via planks, leg raises.

Here is a video to learn more.


Within the workout section, you can find a wide range of exercises which you can use to train all the 4 parts of the abdomen effectively. However, if you want to get washboard abs you will need to follow a healthy diet, as well. For more training and weight loss tips follow us or subscribe.


Why are my abdominal muscles uneven?

Most of the people have uneven abs. Keep working the ab muscles and do the same exercises for both sides.

How to gain bigger abs quickly?

By doing various abdominal exercises. There are some harder ones such as hanging leg raising and  body weight abdominal exercises. You may use weights if you want bigger abs.

Does keeping abdominals flexed help with burning fat?

Keeping your midsection flexed does not really help to get rid of belly fat, but it surely helps to strengthen the abdomen. This method is a sort of tiny workout. Besides, it has positive effects on your posture.