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How to Use an Ab Slide Correctly

by
author image Andrea Cespedes
Andrea Cespedes is a professionally trained chef who has focused studies in nutrition. With more than 20 years of experience in the fitness industry, she coaches cycling and running and teaches Pilates and yoga. She is an American Council on Exercise-certified personal trainer, RYT-200 and has degrees from Princeton and Columbia University.
How to Use an Ab Slide Correctly
The Ab Slide promises great results, but you have to use it correctly. Photo Credit Jacob Ammentorp Lund/iStock/Getty Images

The Ab Slide targets seven different muscles at once with a simple gliding action. In just a few minutes per day, says the Ab Slide promo, you'll work your abs -- including the rectus abdominis and obliques -- waist, arms, chest, shoulders and back.

The device, which is essentially a plastic roller with metal bars for your hands, slides forwards and back. As you push the machine forward along the floor, you work against resistance created by a rubber band. When you change your torso's angle to slide forward, your abdominal muscles activate as you work to maintain a rigid torso.

Proper use of the Ab Slide is essential to its effectiveness. Using the device correctly also prevents undue stress on your spine.

Proper Use of the Ab Slide

Step 1

Assemble the Ab Slide easily. It's portable, but weighs 5 pounds, so you'll likely store it at home,rather than in your gym bag. Simply slide the metal bars into the slots on the side to form the handles. Your Ab Slide is now ready to go.

Step 2

Kneel in front of the Ab Slide and place your hands on the handles using an overhand grip. Put your knees on the provided knee pad, a gym mat or blanket for protection.

Step 3

Contract your abdominals and push the device forward. Keep your belly pulled in toward your spine and keep sliding until your back and shoulders are parallel to the floor. The machine is designed to support you as you push out to discourage poor form.

Step 4

Pull the machine back toward you, still keeping a rigid spine. Brace your abs as you do this reverse action as this is the most effective portion of the move. A study published in a 2006 issue in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research showed that the eccentric, or return, action of the Ab Slide more effectively activated the rectus abdominis and external obliques when compared to the standard crunch.

Step 5

The product suggests just 3 to 4 minutes per day of work on the Ab Slide will yield results. This could be done with three sets of 10 to 20 repetitions, depending on your stamina.

Mimic the activity of the Ab Slide with a stability ball.
Mimic the activity of the Ab Slide with a stability ball. Photo Credit indykb/iStock/Getty Images

Effectiveness in Achieving a Washboard

While the Ab Slide promises you a six-pack, it'll take more than use of the machine to achieve this goal. The Ab Slide does effectively train the muscles of your core -- more so than equipment-free moves such as the crunch and side plank, according to another study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning research from 2008. But strong, shapely muscles won't show if you have a layer of fat covering them.

The American Council on Exercise explains that a woman needs a body fat range of 14 to 20 percent and a man, 6 to 13 percent to show off sleek ab muscles. This is a level usually attained by elite athletes or extremely dedicated exercisers. It requires a targeted diet that includes modest portions of whole foods, such as lean proteins, vegetables and healthy fats. You don't have room for lots of processed foods or event carbohydrates.

Regular total-body weight training and cardiovascular work also helps you achieve a low body-fat level. A few minutes per day on the Ab Slide isn't enough to burn the calories or build the muscle required to boost your metabolism and slash fat.

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