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2021's Best Ab Workout In 5 Minutes - Only THREE Exercises

2021 has come and nearly gone but I wanted to share with you something I've spent the greater part of a year trying to conjure up. It's almost the new year and that is when so many of us take on new fitness goals. But if you're anything like me, you don't necessarily have a ton of time in the day to do an intense workout routine. So I'm sharing my favorite 5-minute ab workout that is the perfect mix of stability, mobility and strengthening.

5 minutes?? How could this possibly work?

As mentioned in many of my other blogs, we follow a neuromechanical formula here at Rehab and Revive and we dish out our exercise plans to help people recover and thrive in performance. The PROPER exercise progression gets you the most out of a quick workout by prepping your body.

The only three exercises you'll need to complete this 5-minute workout are:

  1. Lift Off (Lower Extremity)

  2. Physio Ball Roll Up

  3. Ab Series

Lift Off 2.0: 45 seconds on each side (90 seconds total)

To do this exercise you'll need a firm surface to work on. Best to do on the floor on a comfortable surface such as a yoga mat. Start on your knees and forearms creating a tabletop. I always say you should think of yourself as a statue and slowly "unweight" one of your knees. Do this like you are very slowly redistributing the weight of your body to your other leg and arms. The cool thing about this exercise is that we are incorporating the small muscles that run along your spine called the multifidi. These muscles are the support beams for your spine.

I discovered this exercise by pure luck and circumstance but it quickly became one of my all time favorite exercise. So I am happy to share this exercise with you all!

Ball Roll Up: 90 seconds

For this exercise you'll need a physio ball (see the thumbnail above for an example). You'll want to bend at your knees and place your outstretched elbows on top of it and start rolling the ball forward and backward across your arms.

Dynamic movements always require a stable base. Your core muscles will be required to contract and lengthen in a controlled manner to do this exercise smoothly. We can try this exercise in different ranges and directions by doing diagonal and lateral movements and well.

Ab Series (Created by the Institute of Physical Art): 2 minutes (30 seconds per phase)

This exercise is an oldie but a goodie and it is one of my most hated exercises. That's because it's HARD. It is a combination of strengthening through your neuromuscular system and builds on endurance for your core muscles.

As you'll see in the video, the setup for this exercise is laying on your back with your knees and hips up as though you were sitting in a chair. You'll then outstretch your arms to press into your knees. This exercise works your intrinsic core muscles, obliques and multifidi.

By taxing this system, you are building tolerance to load or stress. It's best to hold each position until the shaking stops but 30 seconds per phase is typically sufficient.

Challenge yourself before the 2022 workout and weight loss resolutions!

Heal smarter,

Dr. Justin C. Lin


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