Strong and toned oblique muscles are not only essential for core strength but also for achieving a sculpted midsection that many women desire. The obliques are the muscles on the sides of your abdomen, and working on them can help improve posture, support the lower back, and reduce the risk of lower back pain. In this article, we’ll explore the best oblique exercises for women to target this important muscle group and help you achieve a strong and shapely core.
- Russian Twists
- Russian twists are a classic oblique exercise that engages your entire core. Sit on the floor with your knees bent and your feet flat. Lean back slightly, keeping your back straight. Clasp your hands together or hold a weight, and twist your torso to one side. Return to the center and twist to the other side. This exercise can be made more challenging by lifting your feet off the ground.
- Oblique Crunches
- Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Place your hands behind your head. Lift your shoulders off the ground, but this time, twist your torso to one side, bringing your elbow towards your opposite knee. Repeat on both sides to work both sets of obliques.
- Plank with Hip Dips
- Get into a forearm plank position. Slowly rotate your hips to one side, almost touching the ground, and then rotate to the other side. This exercise engages your obliques while also working your entire core. Make sure to keep your body in a straight line during the entire movement.
- Side Planks
- Side planks are excellent for targeting the obliques. Lie on your side, propped up on your elbow. Your body should form a straight line from head to heels. Hold this position for as long as you can, then switch to the other side.
- Bicycle Crunches
- Bicycle crunches are a dynamic exercise that works both the upper and lower oblique muscles. Lie on your back with your hands behind your head. Lift your head and shoulders off the ground and bring your right elbow towards your left knee, simultaneously straightening your right leg. Switch sides, bringing your left elbow towards your right knee.
- Standing Side Bends
- Standing side bends are a simple yet effective exercise. Stand up straight with your feet hip-width apart and your hands by your sides. Gently bend to one side, stretching your oblique muscles. Return to the center and then bend to the other side.
- Medicine Ball Twists
- Sit on the ground with your knees bent and your feet flat. Hold a medicine ball or a weight with both hands close to your chest. Lean back slightly and lift your feet off the ground if you want to make it more challenging. Twist your torso to one side and tap the medicine ball on the ground next to you. Alternate sides.
- Leg Raises with a Twist
- Lie on your back with your legs straight. Place your hands under your hips or by your sides. Lift your legs a few inches off the ground, then twist them to one side without letting them touch the floor. Return to the center and twist to the other side.
- Seated Knee Drop
- Sit on the ground with your knees bent and your feet flat. Lean back slightly and lift your feet off the ground. Keep your back straight, and slowly lower your knees to one side without letting them touch the ground. Bring them back to the center and lower them to the other side.
- Windshield Wipers
- Lie on your back with your arms stretched out to the sides for support. Lift your legs and bend your knees at a 90-degree angle. Keep your feet together and, without moving your upper body, slowly lower your legs to one side as far as you can control. Return to the center and lower them to the other side.
Incorporating these oblique exercises into your workout routine will help you strengthen and tone your core, providing numerous benefits beyond aesthetics. A strong core improves your overall posture, helps prevent lower back pain, and supports your daily activities. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced fitness enthusiast, these exercises can be adapted to your fitness level.