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Strengthen Core Without Crunches

Crunch-Free Moves For Bikini-Ready Abs

We are pumped to share one of our fave stories from Fitness Magazine here on FitSugar!

Last Wednesday was officially the first day of the most belly-baring season: Summer! While we may be tempted to chill out by the pool with a tasty drink, it's not the time to slack off on staying fit and strong (but when is?). We asked Jill Miller, trainer and creator of the new Coregeous workout DVD, to share five of her favorite, unique moves that tone the midsection.

Add them to your routine this week and hit the beach with confidence all Summer long!

Magician's Assistant on a Ledge

  1. Place your right hip on a brick and right elbow on the ground.
  2. Engage your side-waist muscles to raise your legs to hover four to six inches above the ground. (Make sure that your shoulders, pelvis, and ankles line up with each other, and that the two legs remain glued together.)
  3. Sustain the position while breathing deeply for one full minute, then switch sides and repeat.

WHY? "This exercise targets the internal and external oblique layers and a deep low back muscle," Miller explains. "You will feel this one tomorrow!"

Learn another crunch-free ab move after the break!

Coreso Leg Lifts

  1. Lie on a yoga mat with a block or phone book under your pelvis.
  2. Reach the arms overhead and externally rotate them so that the hands hold on to the sides of the yoga mat and attempt to pull the mat edges apart.
  3. Stretch the right leg toward the ceiling (if hamstrings are tight, bend the knee), and lower the left leg toward the ground without touching the floor. Do not allow the spine to lose its stability or natural curves.
  4. Breathe for one full minute on each side while remaining stable.

WHY? "This pose targets the critical relationship between our breath and our posture while toning the innermost abdominal muscles. You will feel a tremendous stretch while lengthening and strengthening," Miller says.

Read on for three more crunch-free ab moves.

More from Fitness Magazine:

The Beach Body Cinch and Sculpt Workout

Size Matters: Your Guide to Healthy Portion Sizes

The Top 10 Exercises to Tone Your Butt

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