It has been six years since I started doing calisthenics. You need existing core strength to perform this kind of resistance training. Due to this, I do calisthenics ab exercises quite a bit.
The advantage of calisthenics is that it trains not only your abdominals efficiently but also helps to burn belly fat since these are compound moves. Also, you do not need to go to the gym, and no equipment is required. Although for the various leg raises, you need a pull-up bar or a power tower.
There are some excellent calisthenics ab workout routines available online. In this post, I have collected the most powerful ones that allow working out your entire core. You can find easier and harder ones.
Frank Medrano’s Calisthenics Abs Workout Without Bar
As you can see, this routine contains different sorts of plank variations. Doing plank is my favorite abs workout, and the mentioned alternatives maximize the effect of this abdominal training method. For these, no bar is needed, only floor exercises for abs are included. This workout has many benefits for beginners.
- The first exercise trains the entire abdomen, lower back, glutes, and other smaller muscles, which control your stability. It is vital to stretch your body, keep your hand and leg high. Medrano suggests keeping the position for 30 sec. I do it for 45 – 60 seconds, and it is a killer.
- Knee tucking is another powerful workout for abs that is especially useful to train hips and oblique muscles. He recommends doing 15 reps. I usually do 20 at the beginning of the routine and less at the end.
- Side plank hold is the most beneficial external obliques exercise. Since I have done it a lot, I keep it for 45 minutes, but sometimes I “use” my 2-year-old son to make this abdominal workout harder. He climbs on my side, and I do not raise my leg. Of course, it is much harder to hold the position. You can try it, but be careful! You need to place your elbow well to stay stable.
- I also do pure calisthenics plank hold for 30-45 minutes since it is among the best static core exercises that work the transverse abdominis muscles well. I sometimes put my son on my back instead of using weighted vests to increase the tension. He likes to sit on my back, and I feel that my whole midsection burns.
- Simple crunches and side crunches are one of the most common abdominal exercises. I do 15 – 20 repetitions, and I try to lift my torso as high as possible.
- Leg raise is the most beneficial to train lower abs, which is used a lot when you do calisthenics workouts. If you cannot lift your body entirely, lift only your knees. I do 15-20 repetitions. Sometimes I ask my wife to push done my legs while they are up. This negative resistance develops abs very effectively.
I do these bodyweight exercises to train my abs muscles after general calisthenics training or after doing cardio kickboxing. Typically, I do all activities 3-4 times.
Epic Outdoor calisthenics core workout
It is a calisthenics abs workout for intermediate. I started about two weeks ago. It is the best core training I have ever made. It is hard since you have to use your whole body weight; you need to control your body and the movement. However, if you want to do calisthenics, you have to train your stomach like this.
- Leg raise push is the first workout. It is best to start with as it is not so hard, though I can do only 8-10 correctly yet.
- Standard leg raises are very beneficial movements. Control the motion, keep your legs stretched and straight. Medrano suggests doing 15, but I cannot do more than 10 properly.
- Front levers are for pros. It is hard to do since incredible strong abdominals and upper body is needed. I can do 1-2 yet, but I prepare for it by doing lots of leg lifts.
- Knee raises are beneficial to train the oblique, and as it is no so hard. I can do 10 – 15 reps by the side. It is essential to concentrate on your hips and oblique while you do it. Knees should touch elbows to perform the full range of motion.
- Overhead kicking is another advanced move that is rather hard to do. I always try to do some, but I cannot do any properly yet.
- L-siting is one of my favorites, although I cannot do it for 20 seconds as it is suggested yet. When I started to do my calisthenics program, I was able to do it for 5 seconds. Now I can do it for 10-12 seconds. It’s hard to keep the balance, but that’s why it works.
I usually do this ab training routine 2-3 times a week. I do 3-4 times the mentioned abs exercises.
Nowadays, I use these two calisthenics abs workouts, and I have good results. My stomach is flatter than before, and I can do far more sit-ups, leg lifts, crunches, etc. I feel that my abdominals support my training well.
Advanced Bodyweight Abs Exercises
This is an advanced core workout with 10-15 killer exercises using a bar and a bench.
The list of exercises are:
- Front Lever raises/pulls
- Oblique Raises
- Sitting leg raises
- Leaning crunches (hanging)
- Monkey Crunches
- Clasp knife (sitting leg raise & crunch combination).
- Knee raises
- Side Raises
- Oblique Crunches
- Dragon flag with different variations.
- Windshield wipers (very powerful oblique exercises).
- Toes to bar (a very important calisthenic core exercise).
Get abs at home with a power tower!
With a power tower, you can do the best bodyweight exercises for your upper body and core. It comes with a pull-up bar, knee raise station, dip bar, and more.
Mix up a few basic exercises to target each part of your core (without necessarily doing them all in the video).
An excellent bodyweight workout that can be done in the street, park, or outside! Get a bar or anything you can use for hanging exercises, as well as a bench or anything you can sit on.
Take your time with the form and proper alignment before you move on to more advanced compound exercises. You need to work up a good technique before doing the Dragon Flag because the neck is sensitive.
If you want to decrease the complexity, do one-leg dragon flags, one-leg raises, etc. Once you’ve practiced those, you can proceed to the full ones.
Build strong abs with bodyweight exercises
Using no gym equipment, you can do these advanced calisthenics movements and variations for core stability.
- Hanging oblique/side raises
- Jack knvies & variations
- Hanging leg raises (full) / Strict toes to bar.
- Flutter kicks & Dragon Flag flutter kicks variation
- Hanging diagonal/oblique raises & variation
- Plank elbow to knee cross ( powerful isometric exercise)
Have you heard about Abdominal hollowings? By lying flat on your back, you can perform hollow body holds. Raise your shoulder blades off the floor as you lift your arms overhead. Tilt your pelvis forward as you raise your lower body. Maintain this hollow body position for the desired amount of time while maintaining your core tight. It is a kind of reverse plank.
More workout ideas
I think the next ones are the best street workout abs routines and the presentations are great as well. Big thanks for madbarz.com
How do I get a six-pack with a calisthenics workout?
Getting six-pack abs is about the body fat percentage. If the abdominal muscles are under a layer of fat, they aren’t visible. So, we have to get rid of it, which is possible with healthy nutrition and cardio workouts that burn more calories than strength training. But, I have to mention that bodyweight training also helps fat loss since most of the exercises are compound moves. That means numerous muscle groups are activated during the movement, which leads to more effective calorie-burning than isolated exercises.
If you already have a lean stomach, then you can build six-pack abs rather fast since you don’t have to burn that existing fat on your tummy.
Just like any other muscle group of the body, the abdominal muscles also grow in size if they regularly get the right type and amount of resistance. Just do the mentioned calisthenics exercises and ab workouts above, and you will see the results.
How do you strengthen your core for calisthenics?
People usually confuse the abs and core muscles.
The abs are the rectus abdominis, which is on the front of the abdomen. It gives the six-pack look.
The core includes abs, external and internal obliques (side abs), transversus abdominis, glutes, back muscles, and hip flexors.
It is essential to strengthening each part of the core. Just focusing on the abs isn’t enough. The core is the connection between the lower and upper body, so it takes place in all activities. The strong core improves stability, coordination, posture, lowers the risk of injuries and back pain.
Related reading: Oblique calisthenics exercises you need to try
How often should you exercise your abs?
As with all muscle groups, your abs require rest and training your abs every day will not allow them to recover adequately. To get the best results from your abdominal workouts, you should ensure you rest for one full day after each workout.
If you do hanging knee raises or leg raises, I suggest that you calisthenics exercise your abs three times a week, giving them time to heal after each workout.
You won’t get a six-pack overnight. You won’t see results for a while unless you keep an exercise routine consistent and long-term.
Is there a way to make the hanging leg raise easier?
Performing these exercises on a leg lift machine or power tower with a backrest makes this exercise less challenging. These are machines with cushioned forearms and backs. With the help of the equipment, you can control the motion much better.
Related reading: How many abs workouts should I do a week?
Can you get abs from calisthenics?
You can build up the abdominal muscles by performing calisthenics. As a form of exercise and movement, calisthenics has many advantages.
To start, some of the calisthenics exercises are specifically designed to target the abs (e.g., crunches, situps, Russian twists, toes to bar, etc.).
Moreover, even movements not specifically targeted at the abs do require a significant amount of body stabilization, which activates the abs since they are integral to your core.
The secret to seeing your abs lies within a healthy diet and a relatively low body fat percentage, though.
For a complete calisthenics core workout, add back extensions/hyperextensions to strengthen the lower back and muscles by your spine. Anyway, the beauty of calisthenics is that most of the exercises engage the whole core effectively, for example, push-ups or pull-ups.
I hope that this blog post has been a helpful guide in deciding on the best calisthenics abs workout! As you can see from the main points, these workouts have been planned to shape up your core muscles. They have also been created to help develop your six-pack of abs. Therefore they are a must for all those looking to enhance their fitness! Try these workouts and let us know what you think!