Turn on the television late at night and you are bound to see an advertisement for the latest fitness gadget. You might see an exercise machine that promises to blast fat and give you flat abs in a few weeks. You've probably seen advertisements for the Ab Squeezer, too. The Ab Squeezer works your core and legs. The effectiveness of ab exercise machines varies, but the biggest factor in your success is your commitment, diet and regular exercise.
The Ab Squeeze Machine
The Ab Squeeze machine is a portable home exercise machine that is designed to work your abs, and it consists of a chair and folds for easy storage. You basically sit on the machine's chair and then perform your abdominal crunches. The chair does not adjust, but it’s supposed to make doing ab-building crunches easier. The ab machine also comes with resistance bands and an instructional DVD. The Ab Squeeze might make it easier to do crunches, but crunches alone will not give you a slim waist and a six-pack. You can't spot train your body. If you want to lose weight and develop ripped abs, you have to do aerobic exercise to burn fat and eat a nutritious, balanced diet.
Warmup and Stretching
Start with a five- to 10-minute cardio warmup and then stretch your muscles before you do any exercise. Warming up and stretching your muscles helps to increase blood flow and prepare your muscles for a vigorous workout. Cool down by doing light exercise and then stretch after a workout. The cool-down helps to slowly return your heart rate and respiration to normal levels. Stretching may help to reduce the risk of muscle soreness by increasing blood flow to remove waste products that contribute to sore muscles.
Strength training, such as ab exercises, should be done two to three times each week for 30 to 45 minutes. Do ab exercises on non-consecutive days to give your muscles time to recover before you work out again. Usually one day is enough time to rest your muscles. The routines you can do on the ab squeeze are pretty much limited to crunches, but you can change the resistance by adding or removing resistance bands.
One of the biggest disadvantages of the Ab Squeeze is it isn't made anymore. Finding a new one might be next to impossible. If you do find a new one, you might have trouble putting it together. The machine is not easy to assemble. Although the Ab Squeeze is small, it does weigh about 20 pounds, so you aren't going to take it with you in a gym bag or while traveling. The workout video is only 14 minutes, and it's on a VHS.
- ShapeFit: Best Ab Exercises: Top 5 Exercises for Ripped Six Pack Abs
- Diet Spotlight: Ab Squeeze Review
- American Council on Exercise: Why is the Concept of Spot Reduction Considered a Myth
- American Council on Exercise: Are the Warm-Up and Cool-down Portions of a Workout Really That Important?
- Dr. Lam: Strength Training
Robin Reichert is a certified nutrition consultant, certified personal trainer and professional writer. She has been studying health and fitness issues for more than 10 years. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of San Francisco and a Master of Science in natural health from Clayton College.