Best Abs Exercises for Mass to Get Six Pack

best abs exercises for mass gain

Six pack abs are the coolest things that you can have on your body. But what we should do to get them? It is not an easy to task for sure. But if you know what you should do, you can get your washboard abs sooner than you think.

So, the first step is to get rid of the fat that is covering your tummy.

If you have just a little bit or nothing, you are lucky, or you follow a good workout program and diet that keeps the fat away from your body.

But, if you have, you should focus on your diet and do fat burning workouts such as HIIT to melt that fat around your waistline. You can have the strongest abdominal muscles in the world; you will never see them if they are under the fat.

Now, let’s say your stomach is fat-free thanks to your efforts or genetics, but your abdominal muscles do not pop out. Your tummy is flat like pancake even though you do hundreds of crunches sit-ups and other abdominal exercises every week.

Before telling you the solution, I would like to ask you a question. What do you do to make your chest, biceps or other muscles big? You lift weights or use other types of resistance, don’t you? The heavier weights you use, the bigger your muscles will be.

So, the answer to have thick abdominal muscles is to use additional resistance for the exercises. After a time the gravity will not be enough to make those muscles grow.

How to add extra resistance? Use a weight plate, dumbbells, a medicine ball, cable crossover, kettlebell, etc. You do not have to be a fitness expert to find out yourself how to make the traditional abs exercises harder to perform.

Need examples? Here are the best ab building exercises for mass and definition.

Best Exercises for Muscle Building Ab Workout

1. Hanging Leg Raise

hanging leg lifts

This exercises itself is among the best lower abs exercise for mass that requires strong core muscles. But, if you use ankle weights or a resistance band you can make it a challenging activity. You can use the power tower as well for this exercise.

Related: Learn more about hanging leg raises

2. Sit Ups on Bench or With Weight

sit up with weight

Sit up is usually criticized but it is great training for developing strong core if it is done properly.

By using an adjustable sit up bench, you can quickly add additional resistance by setting the angle of the board to a higher position. Or you can use a weight plate or dumbbell for even more resistance.

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3. Russian Twist

Medicine-ball-Russian Twist

This is an excellent bodyweight exercise for the oblique, and you can quickly make it harder by holding a medicine ball, weight plate or a dumbbell. There is no need to use too heavy weight since it will be hard to keep the proper form.

4. Cable Crunch


Everybody knows the crunch, but if you have been doing abs training for a long time, it is not hard to perform 50-60.

Machine crunch is one of best exercises for adding mass to abs since we can use rather heavy weights safely. Also, try the cable pallof press which is a great move for the oblique.

5. Plank

plank with weight

Plank is a perfect activity to strengthen the entire core even those deep abdominal muscles. But if you can hold the plank for several minutes, it is time to add extra resistance. Just, place a weight plate on your back. But, I ask my kids to sit on my back. (They are excellent motivators as well!)

6. Barbell Roll Outs


Barbell rollout is among my favorite exercises for massive abs. The rolling out itself works the core very efficiently. However, if you use heavy weight on the barbell, the resistance will be higher when you roll the bar back to the starting position.

Related: Abdominal exercises using weights

7. Ab Wheel With Weight Vest

Ab Wheel With Weight Vest

This exercise is similar to the previous one, but since the roller has one wheel, it is harder to keep the balance and posture. This way the move trains the core muscles even better.

You can add extra resistance to this exercise by wearing a weight vest or instead of kneeling you start from a standing position. If you are really strong, you can try the standing version with a weight vest.

8. Best Abs Building Exercises with Barbell From Athlean-X

I do this exercise for a few months, and I say it must be in your abs routine for mass. It works the entire core plus your arms and shoulders. I wish I has learned this technique sooner.

There is nothing more necessary than a barbell, a few plates, and a corner of the room. An ab workout to gain abs that includes this abdominal exercise will give you a complete six-pack workout.

It is actually a very effective exercise for strengthening your core. Keep in mind that your core is more than just your abs. The aim is to train the core for its antirotation function by incorporating distal arm movements. It is not necessary to do crunches and planks for every ab workout. Keeping rotation under control is also key.

9. Kettlebell Windmill

Kettlebell Windmill exercise

Kettlebell windmills are complex exercises that work the whole body but especially target the obliques (sides of the torso), glutes, and shoulders. Your core muscles will also get stronger and your hamstrings and hips will get more flexible. If you prefer working out with kettlebell this training should be in your program. It is a complate core workout targeting particularly your external oblique.

Related: How to get abs with kettlebells

10. Front Lever

front level

Front levers are calisthenics and gymnastics moves – a static position usually done on still rings or pull-up bars. In front levers, you lower from an inverted hang until your body is horizontal and straight. This calisthenics exercise requires powerful abdominal muscles to perform correctly, but you can boost your muscular abs workout by using leg weights.

Create your abs workout for mass gain

Now, you know some of the best abdominal exercises for mass. So, you can easily create your six pack abs workout routine.

I usually choose 3-4 exercises and do 2-4 sets with 8-10 reps depending on the amount of the resistance. But, that is just a recommendation, try what works for you to build bulky abs.

What you should pay attention to

Firstly, these are advanced abdominal exercises that are not for beginners. They require routine and existing strength. So, if you are a newbie stick to the traditional moves for a period, and gradually add resistance to the moves.

Also, using weights put more significant stress on your joints and muscles, so always warm up before to avoid injuries.

Finally, do keep the proper form. It is tempting to use heavy weights, but if you are not strong enough, you will not be able to perform the moves correctly. And that is not only inefficient, but also dangerous.



I hope you find this guide on how to workout for massive abs useful. It is not complicated just add resistance to the moves. But do not forget, to get six pack you should burn that belly fat first.

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Last update on 2023-10-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API