The Best Stomach Exercises for Kids

Family Doing Situps On Rug At Home
The best stomach exercises for kids will tone their abdominal muscles and core muscles. (Image: AndreyPopov/iStock/Getty Images)

The best stomach exercises for kids are designed to improve your child's strength in his lower and upper abdominal muscles as well as his core muscles. While many parents show concern about the safety of strength training for kids, the American Council on Exercise claims that strength training executed with proper form can help kids overall health and fitness levels.

Planks

A plank is a safe and effective isometric abdominal exercise your child can perform. Have your child lie down on his stomach with his legs extended and arms at his sides. Have him bend his arms at the elbows, placing his forearms to the side of his shoulders. From here, have him push up off the ground, keeping his back straight and parallel to the floor. Have him balance on his toes and forearms in this position until he is fatigued.

Leg Raises

Leg raises are designed to tone your child's lower abdominal muscles. Have your child lie down on his back on a bench with his back flat. From here, have her extend her legs out until they are parallel with the ground. Have her tighten her abdominal muscles and lift her legs up off the bench until they are at a 70 degree angle. Have her hold for several seconds before lowering her legs back down. She should repeat until fatigued.

Crunches

Crunches are a basic type of stomach exercise that both kids and adults perform. While crunches can help strengthen your child's abdominal muscles, proper technique is essential to avoiding injury while performing crunches. Have your child lie down with his arms at his sides and legs bent at the knees. With his feet flat on the floor, instruct him to place both of his hands under his neck for support. Instruct him to tighten his abdominal muscles and and lift his upper torso off the ground until he is 45 degrees off the ground. Tell him to slowly return to his original position and repeat. These crunches can also be performed on a balance ball for an additional workout.

Dead Hangs

This hanging exercise will strengthen your child's abdominal muscles as well as her biceps. Have your child step under a pullup bar. From here, have her place both her hands on the bar with her palms facing her body. From this position, have her slowly hang down off the bar, lifting her feet off the ground and cross them at her ankles. Have her bend her arms slightly while hanging to prevent locking her elbows. Have her hold this position until fatigued.

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