Ab Workouts From Easy To Hard (10 Progressions)

Getting the rock hard abs everyone dreams of requires a tremendous amount of work. The tougher the exercises doesn’t mean quicker results. Progressing with ab workouts should be taken with proper steps. And landing on this article would help you find where you can start on your ab sculpting journey.

Sit ups are the typical ab workout and most well known. They are a great exercise for beginner and advanced fitness enthusiasts alike. But if you’re looking to challenge the body a bit more, or get hyper focussed on certain mid areas. Ab workout progressions would be one way to continue your journey for a flat tummy.

In this article, we’re going to look at 10 ab workouts that range from easy to advanced. All the workouts focus on the core area of the body, with the main difference is how each if performed and at what level of complexity.

Some things to note here, are the importance of learning and maintaining the proper form of each workout. As with other progression workouts, mastering the previous workout is important to help ensure you’re a smoother transition as well as lowering the risk of injury.

Checkout this articles for more progression workouts:

Push Up Progressions
Pull Up Progressions

Ab Progression WorkoutsNumber of reps before advancing
Crunches30 seconds – 1 minute
Side Crunches10 Repetitions
Plank Knees30 seconds – 1 minute
Standard Sit Ups10 Repetitions
Bicycle Crunches10 Repetitions
Chair Sit ups10 Repetitions
Seated In and Outs10 Repetitions
Leg Raises10 Repetitions
Flutter Kicks30 seconds – 1 minute
Hip Raises10 Repetitions
Chart for Ab Workout Progressions
ab workouts

Why Ab Workout Progressions?

There’s nothing wrong with staying with what works for you. A few reps of a standard sit up can be plenty of workout for your torso. Adding on the amount of sit ups per rep or increase your reps altogether is a viable option.

There would come a point where increasing the amount just wouldn’t make sense anymore. When the workout has become too easy for your body. It’s usually a good sign to progress into a more challenging workout that would exercise the same area of the body.

As an example, when using weights. If you’re looking to build muscle and your current level of weights just isn’t cutting it anymore. Naturally you would step up can choose the heavier options and carry on. It’s the same idea with ab workout progressions. Any progressions in calisthenics for that matter.

With a varied ab workout, you would still be getting the exercise you need for the core. The movement may be different, but the purpose of it is to continue to challenge your body and exercise the core muscles.

Can You Do Ab Workouts Everyday?

Committing some time every single day to train requires a lot of dedication and focus. If that is you, than give yourself a pat on the back. Determination like that, or lack of it, is typically where many begin to get just short of their health goals.

Working out your abs everyday, may not be as beneficial as it may seem. It is good practice to rest certain muscle groups for a day or so, after each workout. In doing so, you allow the muscles to repair and rest. Regeneration and repairing is the time where the muscle gets the chance to grow and strengthen.

Take a look at what type of ab workouts you are currently involved with in your workouts. How do they feel after or the next day. Listening to your body is a good way in seeing if you have overloaded too much and need a break or you will see that you can take a bit more.

If you are working out everyday, and really want to incorporate your abs. One way to do that is spread out light workouts through each day. Crunches and Planks are good ways to do this as they do no cause major overload on the core but you will still receive the benefits.

Ab Workout Progressions

It may not be necessary to start from the beginning. But if you are just starting or are not consistent with workouts. Then finding an ab workout in the early stages may be the right choice to take.

You would want to ease into things and not look to overload and shock your body all on the first day.

Let’s take a look at the different ab workouts you can do.

Standard Ab Workouts

  • Crunches. This exercise requires the least amount of movement and is easy to start with. Many home gym enthusiast utilize this workout because of its simplicity.
    To Perform. Lay or your back the same way you would if you were about to do a sit up. With your hands behind your head, perform a half sit up which effectively “crunches” your mid section.
  • Side Crunches. Effective way on working out the muscles on the side. Side crunches focus more on the outer mid section.
    To Perform. Keeping the same formation as crunches, keeping your legs bent lay both to the side of the mat. Perform a crunch as normal from that position.
  • Plank Knees. Planking alone requires you to keep your body as still as possible. Making it the effective workout it is. Adding the knee raises works the sides of your torso and brings an element of mobility.
    To Perform. Set up like you normally would for a blank. Time yourself for 30 seconds or 1 minute (whichever you’re more comfortable with) and alternate raising your knees to the same side of your body.
  • Standard Sit Ups. The most well known ab workout. The sit ups is the common home and gym workout to get the ab exercise in.
    To Perform. Starting on your back and feet on the ground with your knees bent. Keeping your bottom half still, bring your upper body towards your knees.
  • Bicycle Crunches. You should definitely feel the burn with this exercise. Due to the movements, there is a bit of cardio as well.
    To Perform. While sitting on the floor, you can effectively do a crunch and reach one elbow to the alternate knee. Right elbow reach towards the left knee. And alternate to the other side effectively twisting your torso.

Advanced Ab Workouts

  • Chair Sit Ups. A variation of a standard sit up. This exercise begins to test your balance and core strength by not allow support with your legs.
    To Perform. Perform a standard crunch but with the variation of your legs in the air, in the position as if you were sitting on a chair.
  • Seated In and Outs. This the monster of crunches. A great ab workout. Bringing some elements of the previous workouts into one.
    To Perform. Balancing on your bottom, you effectively perform a crunch exercise while simultaneously brining your knees towards your chest.
  • Leg Raises. At this point body stabilization and control is crucial. Leg raises are fun and bring an element of leg training as well.
    To Perform. Sit back in a crunch position. With your hands to your sides or under your bottom. Staying in the crunch position, raise your legs up as high as you can and keeping them straight and as together as possible.
  • Flutter Kicks. Utilizing this workout, really works the lower core. Because of the nature of the exercise you get a bit of a leg workout in as well.
    To Perform. Sitting in a crunch position with your legs kept straight. Begin a walking movement, almost like swimming in a pool.
  • Hip Raises. Form is particular important with this exercise due to the amount of movement involved. Keeping a stable body and controlled movements is the way for success with this exercise.
    To Perform. On your back, have your legs start straight out and off the ground. From there, tuck your knees towards your chest. And push up with your midsection allowing your bottom to point towards the ceiling.


There are plenty of ab workouts that could keep you busy for months in this article. Staying consistent, dedicated and taking care of your body, is good way to see the results you’re looking for.

Keep in mind to stick with an ab workout that works for you, whether it be crunches or hip raises. Starting at the point where you find that it is manageable and just enough of a challenge, should be the right spot to begin.


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