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Squats: The secret to strong abs

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Doing squats is not just about building muscle and strengthening your legs. It’s also about giving your abs the extra kick and improving core strength and definition. In this article we want to explain the important role squats play in core conditioning and reveal why squatting is the secret to achieving a strong set of abs.

Why squats give your abs the extra kick?

Have you ever had the feeling of tiredness in your abs after hitting a long and intense squat workout? When performing a squat, your abs and core face constant tension. Before going from the standing position into the squat, your abs build up tension in the lower part of your upper body. This tension prevents you from falling over, so you don’t bend like you would reaching for your toes. Keeping this tension is hard work for your abs which is why a long lasting squat workout can be an effective replacement for an isolated ab workout.

Which muscles are used to keep your upper body upright?

When doing a squat, especially extensor muscles, lateral and straight abdominal muscles as well as your lower back muscles allow your upper body to remain in a straight position. You can see all the muscles that are engaged during a squat here:

How do I perform a proper squat?

Be it upper body weight or a loaded barbell, your abs and core are the decisive muscles to hold your upper body in a straight and upright position. Also, the upright position of your upper body avoids your back being seriously injured. Here, it’s important to remind yourself of the fact: form is everything. Refresh your memory and watch the instruction video on how to perform a proper squat with a barbell in your Freeletics Gym App or read our article on Squats without weights with Freeletics Bodyweight.

So remember: squats will not only increase the strength in your legs, but will give your abs an added training session, too. Besides doing isolated ab exercises such as crunches and sit-ups, it is also important to train your abs and core with functional movements like squats. Therefore, consider squats as a chance to make your abs stronger and more appealing.