by Andrew Bicknell

There is nothing that signals being in shape quite like a six pack stomach. It is a badge of honor in the fitness industry that signifies dedication and hard work to your fitness goals. It’s also one of the most asked about and misunderstood subjects in the health and industry for the simple fact that most people go about trying to build washboard abs the wrong way.

Part of the problem is the way most people go about building their set of killer abs. Doing hundreds of sit-ups and crunches will build those muscles, but there is more to it then that. You have to see those abs and most people have a nice layer of fat hiding theirs. You see having a set of stellar abs is a function of not only muscle development but also body fat, and to take it one step further it is a function of overall fitness levels.

You see there is more to six pack abs then just being lean and having strong abdominal muscles. A truly fit person has overall bodily strength, endurance, and stability that comes from a combination of healthy diet and core strength exercises. Make no mistake, there is no secret shortcut to building a six pack stomach. It will take a lifestyle centered around nutrition and training if you want to succeed.

The key to a building strong abdominals is improving your core strength. Your core is your entire midsection that includes the muscles around your hips, waist, and back. If all you do is focus on your abdominal muscles you will create an imbalance that can set you up for lower back problems and pain. By focusing on your core you can develop your abs, your core, and your back which creates balance and prevents back issues.

You don’t want to be one dimensional with your training. If you see the body as a whole system and work it as such you will see not only improvement in your abs but also your entire body. This is known as multidimensional training and it will allow you to develop a strong core and functional body.

Look at it this way, your stomach muscles are part of a system. You need to build the entire system for the best results. If you isolate and only work your abdominals without doing core strength exercises you will defeat the purpose of your training. By working your entire core you will become stronger and prevent injuries that will slow down any progress you may be making.