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Are Flutter Kicks the Best Ab Exercise?

author image William McCoy
Toronto-based journalist William McCoy has been writing since 1997, specializing in topics such as sports, nutrition and health. He serves as the Studio's sports and recreation section expert. McCoy is a journalism graduate of Ryerson University.
Are Flutter Kicks the Best Ab Exercise?
Woman in a sports bar with flat abs Photo Credit undrey/iStock/Getty Images

Whether you wish to strengthen your abs to alleviate your back pain, help you perform better in sports or create the type of midsection that attracts attention at the beach, knowing the right exercises is key. Although flutter kicks -- also known as lying scissor kicks -- can strengthen your rectus abdominis muscles, they aren't the fastest route to a six pack.

Choose Bicycle Kicks Over Flutter Kicks

Performing flutter kicks requires your abs to contract, but the exercise doesn't specifically target your abs. Instead, flutter kicks target your hip flexor muscles, known as your iliopsoas. According to the American Council on Exercise, the exercise that generates the most muscle activity in your abs is the bicycle kick maneuver. Other effective ways to strengthen your abs include vertical leg raises with the use of a captain's chair and crunches with your back supported by an exercise ball.

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