Using an ab roller to get a flat stomach is just one of the reasons to use it. An ab roller can also be used to improve your health, not just your looks. If you exercise with an ab roller, you stand to develop stronger abdominal muscles, and these are vital to your overall health. In the case of major back pain, for instance, a lack of strong abdominal muscles is oftentimes a significant, contributing factor. Simple exercises, like crunches on the floor, can sometimes cause pain for those trying to do them. An ab roller becomes one of the remaining alternatives. Unlike doing crunches, exercises with an ab roller should cause less pain due to features like the head and elbow pads.
Familiarize Yourself With an Ab Roller
Before you try to use an ab roller, make sure that you know exactly what it is and what you will be using it for. An ab roller is solely a simple piece of exercise equipment that is meant to help you perform ab exercise while keeping a good form. It's a curved frame in which you lie with your head on a pad, your elbows on two more pads, and your hands gripping its bars. Some designs of the ab roller are centered around a wheel. You use this type by holding the bars on either side of the wheel with both hands while on your knees. Then, you extend your upper body by rolling the ab roller on the floor until you are stretched out. You then contract your abdominal muscles by pushing yourself up off the floor until you are in your starting position again. This constitutes one repetition of an exercise.
Proper use on an ab roller is essential to ensuring that you get the results you want. When you exercise on an ab roller that features head and elbow pads, make sure your head is always relaxed by resting on the pad and that your hands only grip the bar in a light manner. If you use the wheel-and-handle ab roller, you have to also use it properly to get the most from it. Keep yourself from pushing the ab roller with your hands; you know you are pushing it if the ab roller starts to slide on the floor. For curl exercises on the ab roller that features pads, contract your abs and make your shoulders come off the floor a little. Lower them back down only after you have counted four seconds.
As with all pieces of exercise equipment, using the ab roller can lead to injury if you don't know what you are doing. Beginners on the ab roller must always start their exercises slowly and take care to listen to what their bodies are telling them. Proper breathing is essential: As you curl up on the ab roller, exhale, but as you lower your body back down, be sure to inhale.