We're big fans of Aussie trainer and founder of the Sweat With Kayla app Kayla Itsines, and we're delighted to share this abs workout she created for POPSUGAR. See the exercises in the video, then read below for additional instruction and tips. And, lucky for all of us, Kayla Itsines will be leading a real-time workout at POPSUGAR's Play/Ground event in NYC on June 9 and 10! Get your tickets here.
Directions For Abs Circuit Workout
Start a timer for seven minutes and aim to complete the exercises in the following circuit as many times as you can before your timer goes off. While you're aiming to complete each exercise as quickly as possible, it's important that you maintain proper technique throughout.
Bent Leg Raise and Hip Lift
Start by lying flat on your back on a yoga mat and place both hands underneath your coccyx bone as shown. Extend both legs out and engage your abdominal muscles by drawing in your belly button to your spine. This is your starting position. Keeping your feet together, contract your abdominal muscles and bend your legs to bring your knees to your chest. Allow your lower back to lift off of the floor as shown to allow full contraction of your abdominals. Briefly hold this position and then slowly extend your legs to return to starting position. Complete 15 reps.
Tip: Tuck your knees all the way in to your chest to fully contract your abs.
Outward Snap Jump
Place both hands on the floor slightly further than shoulder-width apart with both feet together behind you, resting on the balls of your feet; this is your starting position. Quickly jump both feet outward so that they're wider than your hips, as shown. Quickly jump both feet inward to bring them back together into the starting position. Continue alternating between feet together for 20 reps.
Tip: Keep your shoulders in line with your hands. Engage your core to keep your hips stable.
Straight-Leg Sit-Up and Twist
Start by lying straight with your back on the floor, both arms extended above your head. Place both hands behind your head. Engage your abdominal muscles by drawing your belly button in toward your spine; this is your starting position. Keeping your heels firmly planted on the floor, slowly lift your head, shoulder blades, and torso off the floor. Ensure that it's your abdominals that initiate the movement and that you do not use your arms to swing your torso up. As you sit up, extend your left arm and twist over the right side of your body as shown. Slowly untwist and lower your torso back into starting position. Repeat using your right arm and twisting over the left side of your body; this counts as one rep. Continue alternating between left and right for a total of 20 reps.
Tip: Your abs should be initiating this movement. Avoid using your arms to swing yourself up.