Whether you can’t come up with effective exercises for your core or if you’re simply looking to get an intense workout in, then look no further. In this video, Simone Farrington takes us through an intense 15-minute ab workout.
It’s not a problem if you aren’t able to complete the same exercises as demonstrated by Simone, as we’ve included regressed versions of each exercise throughout the video, so this workout is suitable for all levels of fitness.
15 Minute HIIT Abs Workout with Simone Farrington
The session runs for 15-minutes, working with intervals of 40-seconds of work with 20-seconds of rest. In total, the workout consists of 3 rounds of 5 exercises. Each exercise also has a regressed (easier) version demonstrated by Calvin in the back right of the video.
1. Bicycle Crunches
Technique: Lying supine (on your back), start by contracting your abs/obliques to flex your hips and torso, touching the opposite elbow to the opposite knee. This should be done in a twisting motion, alternating sides each rep and allowing your upper back to lift from the floor. Ensure each rep is controlled appropriately.
Regression: If you’re having difficulties with this movement, we recommend performing each rep in a slightly more casual fashion. Instead of immediately executing the rep on the opposite side, like in Simone’s version, perform the knee to elbow action on one side, return to the neutral starting position, then repeat for the opposite side. For this version, your upper back can remain on the floor.
2. Butterfly Sit Ups
Technique: Similar to a groin stretch, place your feet together so that the soles of your feet are together. Your hips should be open with your knees flexed. Starting with your back on the floor, drive your arms up and through your hips, like a regular sit up. Be sure to control the downward portion of the rep.
Regression: Keep your lower back on the floor throughout each rep, focusing on flexing your rectus abdominus to bring your upper back off of the floor. Again, ensure that each rep is controlled.
3. Flutter Kicks
Technique: Lying supine, start with your shoulders/upper back elevated from the floor. Elevate both of your feet about 8 inches off the floor, keeping them straight. From here, alternate kicking your legs in opposite direction, hence the name ‘flutter kicks’. Make sure these are controlled reps.
Regression: To regress, use a greater range of movement with a slower speed.
4. Knee Drive to Toe Tap
Technique: Similar to the bicycle crunches, start supine with your upper back slightly off the floor. With a twisting motion, bring your opposite elbow to your opposite knee. Then, return to the start position, before bringing your hand to touch your toes on the same side, keeping the leg straight this time. From here, switch sides and perform both the knee to elbow and hand to toe element.
Regression: Flex less through your core and only perform the knee to elbow part of the exercise.
5.1. Plank + Knee to Opposite Elbow
Technique: Start in the plank position, with your arms extended so that your wrist joints are stacked beneath your shoulders. Maintain a straight line from your shoulders to your ankles, squeezing your glutes and abs throughout the exercise. In a slow and controlled manner, bring your opposite knee towards the opposite arm, then return to the start position and repeat on the opposite side.
Regression: Only perform the plank element of the exercise.
5.2. Mountain Climbers
Technique: Starting in the plank position again, bring your knee to your elbow on the same side. Alternate rapidly as if you were running on the spot.
Regression: Only perform the plank element of the exercise.
Is 20 minutes really all it takes?
One of the main purposes of an effective cool down is to try and prevent blood pooling – when blood that has travelled to the working muscles remains thereafter exercise before being removed by venous return. This can cause dizziness and nausea, most prevalent with leg workouts. Additionally, a cool down is a good time to work on mobility while your joints are warm and loose.
Plank walk outs
Starting in a standing position, flex at your hips with soft knees, until your hands can touch the floor. Using your hands like feet, walk out until you reach the plank position, then walk back to the start.
World’s greatest stretch
Start standing, then adopt a lunge stance, with one foot out in front of the other, forming approximately 90-degree angles at both knees. Allow your knee to rest on the floor if needed and use a wider stance if you struggle to balance. Put the opposite hand to your leading leg on the floor by the leading foot. Rotate your torso so that you are facing towards the leading leg, with the opposite arm reaching straight up. Remember to perform on both sides.
Prone/all fours lat stretch
Get onto your hands and knees, with your hands on the floor directly below your shoulders. Bring one hand off the floor, and reach under the opposite armpit, keeping straight arms and allowing your torso to twist and follow your arm. Remember to perform on the other side too.
Downward dog into cobra
Using two common yoga positions, ‘Downward dog’ and ‘Cobra’, start in the standing position. Fold at your hips so that your hands are touching the floor. Keep your legs straight and walk your hands out until there is about a 90-degree bend at your hips. Force your upper back down so that you feel a stretch through the back of your legs. From here, following the technique in the video, move straight into the cobra position. Here, you will be in a similar position to the plank, except you will allow your hips to drop to the floor and lift your chest and head up, keeping your arms extended. Alternate between these two positions.
Lunge to runners stretch
(Lunge stance with arms overhead into lean back hamstring stretch)
Start in a lunge stance with your arms overhead. Hold this position, then sit back into your back leg, keeping the front foot where it is, moving into a straight leg with your heel on the floor. You should now feel a stretch in the hamstrings of the leading leg. Hold this position, then repeat the same on the opposite side.
Calf pedals and superman stretch
Start in the standing position, then move into the ‘downward dog’ position as previously described. Alternating, allow one knee to bend at a time, increasing the amount of ankle dorsiflexion to increase the stretch on the calves. Bounce between legs, then move into the superman stretch. The superman stretch involves lying prone on the floor, then putting your arms straight overhead/in front of you. Keeping your arms straight, bring your arms back down to your sides, performing the movement of adduction.
Groin stretch, same as butterfly sit up
Similar to the butterfly sit up, sit on the floor, and put the soles of your feet together. Bring your feet close to your body and push down on your knees in order to feel a greater stretch in your adductors.
In a seated position on the floor, flex both of your knees to 90-degrees. Allow your hips to rotate so that your knees and upper leg are touching the floor as seen in the video. Try to ensure your legs stay on the floor during this stretch. Make sure to repeat on the other side too!
Single leg raise
Lying supine on the floor, simply flex at the hip on one side to bring your straight leg as far as you can, maintaining it straight throughout. Repeat on both sides.
Static knee crossover
Lying supine, flex both your hips and knees to 90-degrees. Keeping your lower back on the floor, rotate your knees all the way to the floor on one side before repeating the opposite way.
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