How can I get a Six Pack?

One of the most common questions people ask fitness trainers is “How can I get a six pack?”. So, we asked the Register of Exercise Professionals for their top six tips on how to get six pack abs.   

1.    To understand the basics it's useful to know what a ‘six pack’ is. Those six bumps you see defining the taut tummies of fitness models are the rectus abdominis muscles. Genetics or how your muscles are naturally formed will play a significant role in how well your six pack will show through.

2.    The main key to developing a prominent six pack is reducing body fat along with hard training. Intense bursts of cardio training (e.g. intervals) will increase metabolism (i.e. burn more calories even after training) and get the six pack look!

3.    Exercises that use lots of big muscles will be much more effective than isolating small muscles. Full body movements such as deadlifts, press ups, and squats will get your ‘core muscles’ really working. Creating intra-abdominal pressure is one of the key functions of the rectus abdominis.

4.    Doing big movements will get those core muscles working harder than most isolation abdominal exercises like crunches. That said, it is good to ‘hit’ the core muscles after you have completed your big movements as part of your balanced training programme. A few crunches (not too many!) and sit-ups on an exercise ball will really target that six pack stomach area.


5.   Getting your diet right is probably just as important, maybe even more essential, than exercise. You don’t want your six pack stomach to be hidden by a layer of fat! Eating little and often will aid your aim of increasing your metabolism.


6.    Let’s end with a ‘do not’! It is not effective or good for you to do hundreds of abdominal crunches every day. This is more likely to give you a bad back and manipulate your body into poor posture. Without good posture your six pack will never show.

Register of Exercise Professionals



Tags: abdominal exercises, abs, crunches, diet, How can I get a Six Pack?, shape up, six pack, stomach exercises, tonning


It's an interesting concept

It's an interesting concept having a 6 pack.  I used to have one which was natural and not really down to hard work.  The trouble is it is really hard to keep, you have to have something like 11% body fat or it wont show through.  I'm running a lot now and there are some really long runs in there so I need to eat to fuel these runs. I still have the muscles there but they don't show through anymore and I'm at about 18% body fat now which is by no means fat.  The thing is I am way way more stronger and fitter than I was when I had the six pack!

Having a six pack is like polishing a car.  A big shiny red Ferrari just shouts look how fast I am but you can also polish a Ford Escort.

It would be interesting to do one of your questions here and asking what your readers think.  I personally love destroying the muscle bound guys in races not because I'm jealous, I'm not.  I have a natural athlectic build but i also work hard at being fit and will try my hardest in any race I enter.  If you still look good crossing the line, youre not doing it right.  

There are two types fitness people.  The ones who do it to look good (which is fine) and the ones who do it to compete.  Very rarely do the two mix.