Celebrity Trainer Anna Kaiser Wants You To Stop Talking About Your Abs

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If you were to look at celebrity trainer Anna Kaiser’s clients—Kelly Ripa, Hilary Duff, Shakira, not to mention Kaiser herself—the thought “OMG how the eff do I get her abs” would probably cross your mind.

But please, stop right there, says Kaiser. “I want to get you away from thinking about abs,” the AKT founder told WomensHealthMag.com in an interview, via Pure Protein. “It’s really all about core.”

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“The goal is really to make sure your body is strong…not just focus on aesthetics.”

Just a refresher if you’re currently scratching your head in confusion: Your core does not equal your abs. “Abs” refers to your abdominal muscles, which include the rectus abdominus (the top layer of muscles that can create a “six-pack” look), transverse abdominus (the super-deep muscles that wrap around the stomach), and the internal and external obliques (the muscles on the side of your abs.)

Your core, on the other hand, is made up of so much more: It includes all the muscles in the pelvis, lower back, hips, and abdomen, explains Kaiser.

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And while there’s nothing wrong with strengthening your abs muscles, if it means neglecting the rest of your core, you’re not doing your body any favors.

“If you only focus on your abdominal wall, your back isn’t going to be as strong, and so there’s going to be an imbalance in your body,” says Kaiser. “You want them to be strong together and work together, and not have one overcompensate.”

That’s why, according to Kaiser, every exercise she does in her AKT fitness classes, and with celebrity clients, focuses on the entire core—targeting it from every plane of motion.

Many of her favorite moves use a stability ball, which helps challenge a variety of muscles in the core. Here are a few you can try for yourself at home:

Stability ball pike

Women’s Health

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How to: Assume a pushup position with your shins resting on a Swiss ball. Without bending your knees, roll the ball toward your body by raising your hips as high as you can. Pause, then return the ball to starting position. That’s one rep. Do 30.

Stability ball knee tuck

Women’s Health

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How to: Assume a pushup position with your shins resting on a Swiss ball. Keeping your lower back straight, tuck your knees to roll the ball toward your chest. Pause, then return the ball to starting position. That’s one rep. Do 30.

Stability ball pushup

Women’s Health

How to: Assume a pushup position with your shins resting on a Swiss ball. Lower your body until your chest nearly touches the ground, without allowing your hips to sag. Pause, then push yourself back to starting position. That’s one rep. Do 30.

Bottom line: “The goal is really to make sure your body is strong, to support every movement that you do in life, and not just focus on aesthetics,” Kaiser says. “Your core is the center of your entire body—everything else is an extension—so you want to make sure you’re strong in your entire core, and not just part of it.”



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