The "pouch" as some women refer to it, is the lower portion of your stomach, and often the hardest part of the abdomen to get in shape. Even women who are in great shape still have difficulty toning this part of the body.
What is a Pouch?
The term "pouch" is what many people use to refer to the lower part of the abdomen. It is hard to fully exercise this area because it is not one muscle but actually the lower part of a bigger muscle, the rectus abdominis muscle. Ab exercises that focus on the lower part of your abdomen are a way to tone, strengthen and possibly help the pouch area disappear. A few exercises can help tone your lower abs.
Start this exercise by sitting with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Lean back and use your elbows to keep your upper body propped up, off of the mat, with your palms facing down. Engage your abs and lift your legs to a 90-degree angle with your knees touching. With your hips on the ground and your knees still at a 90-degree angle, bring your legs over to the left slowly, lower them, bring them back to center, then slowly bring them over to the right. Do 20 reps total, right and left.
Inching Elbow Plank
Begin in a plank position on your elbows. This looks like the top of a pushup position, but instead of supporting your body with your hands, bend your elbows and lower down onto your forearms. Your hands are clasped and your feet are slightly wider than hip width. Step your left foot toward your hands as you begin to lift your hips slightly, then step in with your right foot, lifting your hips a little more. Step your left and right feet in a little more, so your body ends up in a pike position. Slowly walk your feet back out until you return to plank position. That's considered one rep. Do three sets of five reps.
Physical Benefits of Toning Your Pouch
Not only can getting your pouch in shape help you look great, there are also other physical benefits. You will experience better posture, improved performance in your workouts, injury prevention, increased protection for your back, and a more stable center of gravity.
Jenna Zizzo is a certified yoga instructor. Her articles on yoga and healthy living have been featured on websites such as Arizona Yoga Community, and Zizzo has also been published in magazines such as "944 Magazine," as well as other various online publications.