Bored of doing crunches? Try out the ‘Stomach Vacuum’ exercise to burn that stubborn belly fat!
Can I get a ‘hell yeah’ if you’re one of those persons who’s sick of and distraught over the number of belly fat reducing exercises you’ve tried out in the past with no significant results? Read on and find out about this type of exercise that might just work its magic on you. If you are interested in doing something other than exercise, then you might want to also check out these best fat burners uk supplements here.
1 What is Stomach Vacuuming?
I’m pretty sure we’ve all been guilty of a minimal amount of stomach vacuuming, at some point of time or the other. As the name suggests, it’s basically ‘vacuuming’ your stomach. We’ve all sucked in our belly fat from time to time – while posing for a photograph, while trying to pull off a rather slim outfit etcetera etcetera, ring a bell? Obviously yes, everybody does that.
Stomach vacuuming actually is a breathing exercise which activates and strengthens the transverse abdominis — your deepest abdominal muscle — by simply contracting it. Do it right, and you’ll cinch your midsection while you stabilize your spine, which can reduce lower back pain and improve your posture as well.
2 Why stomach vacuuming?
Stomach Vacuum focuses on breathing mechanics and is the pillar of Yoga and Pilates. It’s not a very attractive exercise and at times, can make you look like a highly undernourished zombie, but apparently is highly effective, as you’ll be holding your abs in tension for a long period of time.
The reasons for performing this exercise vary. It has been done for aesthetic purposes, mostly in bodybuilding competitions (to suck the abdomen in, making it appear less bulgy). It can be done to enhance the overall stability and strength of the core. It is used in belly dancing to actively perform flutters, engaging various fibers in the muscle selectively. Some believe the pressure it exerts upon the intestines helps in easy digestion. It is also used in reverse breathing upon exhalation.
3 How to perform a stomach vacuum?
It is advised that you perform this exercise on an empty stomach. You can do this exercise while standing on all fours or whilst lying on your back. If you’re a beginner, doing it on your back is the best way to get you started.
If you’re lying on your back, lie down in a comfortable position and bend your knees, such that the back of your soles touch your rear (feet flat on the floor/mattress). Inhale deeply through the nose once for around 3-5 counts and hold it in for one count. This is followed by the vacuum. Forcefully let out the air through your mouth, thereby emptying all the air in your stomach such that it flattens out almost completely and hold it tightly in this manner for around 15 seconds.
Repeat this process three to four times. Gradually, progress from holding it for 15 seconds to 60 seconds. While exhaling, try to pull in your belly button as close to your spine as possible. The closer you get, the greater the intensity of the contraction and the more effective this move will be.
If you’re performing this exercise whilst on all fours or while lying down, follow the same procedure. While vacuuming the air out of your stomach, ape a concave mirror/lens like shape to aid the tightening of the abs.
4 Will it lead to six pack abs?
If done in this manner regularly, it is said that this exercise can be a potential belly fat burner. But, performing this exercise alone cannot help you to see clear cut results. Ab exercises alone are not going to get you anywhere near a six-pack.
Being able to see the abs is the result of a clean diet, which creates low body fat. For example, females would need to have a body fat lower than 18 percent to see this kind of definition, no matter how much time they give to ab exercises.
5 Adho Mukha Svanasana
This is the equivalent of the stomach vacuum in Yoga, as advocated by the renowned late pioneer, BKS Iyengar. It is also referred to as the downward facing dog pose, cat/tiger stretch. But the anatomical focus is more widespread as it spans over both primary and secondary muscles.
Try this exercise to bid goodbye to that stubborn belly fat and flaunt your healthier self.