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Stomach Vacuum Exercise

author image Beth Rifkin
Based in San Francisco, Beth Rifkin has been writing health- and fitness-related articles since 2005. Her bylines include "Tennis Life," "Ms. Fitness," "Triathlon Magazine," "Inside Tennis," "American Fitness" and others. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Temple University.
Stomach Vacuum Exercise
A woman with a slender stomach. Photo Credit Jack Hollingsworth/Photodisc/Getty Images

The stomach vacuum exercise is a simple abdominal move that targets the transversus abdominis, which is the deep-seated abdominal muscle that lies under the rectus abdominis. Responsible for several important functions of the body, the transversus abdominis supports your posture, aids in stability, protects the inner organs and plays a role in your respiratory system by helping to expel air from your lungs.

No Electricity Needed

An actual vacuum is not at all involved in the vacuum exercise, but rather it consists of hollowing out your stomach. The exercise can be performed while standing, lying down, sitting or kneeling. Beginners may find it easier to perform the exercise lying supine, with the body relaxed and supported by the floor. Inhale through your nose for a count of three to five. Hold the air in for one count. As you exhale through your mouth, draw your stomach in toward your spine as tight as possible. Hold the contraction for a count of three and release. Repeat for five repetitions.


The vacuum exercise is best executed on an empty stomach. If in a lying prone position, press your lower back into the floor as you bring your naval toward your spine. Practice hollowing out your stomach two to four times per week.

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