Today’s workout is focused on working your core. This routine will work your abs from every angle-front, sides and back. It is designed to help strengthen and tighten your mid-section. I also incorporated movements to work your lower back, and upper glutes, because maintaining strength/balance in this area significantly impacts the results you are going to get in your midsection. A strong back helps you maintain alignment through your hips, and improves your posture.
During core exercises you should focus on keeping the core strong and engaged the entire time. You can do this by pulling your stomach muscles in & keeping them tight. You should still be able to breath, but engaging your core in this way will work your transverse abs. You can think of the transverse abs as an internal corset. They work across your midsection, horizontally, and act as an internal corset, pulling your waist in.
You can see in the picture above, that the muscle fibers in each muscle group of your core move in different directions. This is why it is so important to work in each plane of movement (horizontally, vertically & twisting) to engage each section of the core and maximize your results.
Have fun with today’s workout! Let me know what you think of it!
Intervals: 12 Rounds of 10/50.
Beginner: 10 Reps
Intermediate: 15 Reps
Advanced: 20 Reps
- Knee Plank Series (right)
- Knee Plank Series (left)
- Temple Tap Abs
- Hip Drop Side Plank (right)
- Hip Drop Side Plank (left)
- Cobra Lift
- Rainbow Plank (right)
- Rainbow Plank (left)
- Side Plank Leg Series (right)
- Side Plank Leg Series (left)
- Reverse Plank Leg Lift
Repeat 1-3X (Photo Tutorial Below)
Optional: Pair with 10-30 Minutes of Cardio. Jump Rope Option Below.
Equipment: Gymboss Interval Timer set for 10 Rounds of 10/50 and a Jump Rope
1. Jump Rope
2. High Knees
3. Jumping Jack
5. Single Leg Hops (5 per leg, alternating)
6. Jump Rope
7. High Knees
8. Jumping Jack
10. Single Leg Hops (5 per leg, alternating)
10 thoughts on “12-Minute Ab Toning Workout: Low Impact, Highly Effective”
Hi Melissa, I have a question to the temple tap exercise: I always have a neck and shoulders cramps when I am doing it. Even if I could do it longer with the abs, I just can not due to the discomfort in the neck. Any suggestion how to avoid this?
You can try it while supporting your head, with your hands clasped behind your head. Be careful with this though, because you should never be pulling on your neck. The other option is to keep your shoulders and head on the floor. Do the same motion with your hands in prayer position, and reaching with your elbows toward the top corner of your mat. Turn your head to look at your elbow, but keep it supported on the floor. Don’t focus on speed. Just go through the exercise, focusing on full range of motion, and engaging the abs.
I hope that helps!
great low impact workout,. thanks Melissa. it was challenging as always.
These must be really tough. It seemed like you were struggling through them. Do you ever do regular crunches for abs or you just do these kind?
I usually do all the crunches with no problems, but I always need to support my neck at least a bit. Otherwise I get cramps immediately.
Love your videos, Melissa! I’m nursing an injured wrist, so what would be a good alternative to the reverse plank leg lift? Thanks!
You can do the reverse plank leg lift from your forearms. Keep your fingers pointed toward your toes, and rest your weight from elbows to finger tips. 🙂
I just want to thank you very much for your high quality workouts. As a strength coach myself, I incorporate your workout routines on my cardio days but I just want to say that your exercises are highly effective and functional. I wish there were more trainers like you out there. Keep up the great work. we love following your work.
I am just starting doing core exercises and they are more difficult than what they seems
Great low impact. Love this one.