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&exercise & fitness Exercise A Abdominal muscles have their own roles to perform with each movement we make to help strengthen our core. Fig ure 1 34 inMotion Volume 24, Issue 4 July | August 2014 by Cindy Asch-Martin Abdominal and gluteal exercises can be two of the most challenging for amputees. There are so many ways to work these muscles; whatever level of amputee you are, there is one that will work for you. Your abdominal muscles are made up of several different muscle groups: the rectus abdominis muscle (often referred to as the “six-pack”), the external oblique, the internal oblique, and the transverse abdominis. They all have their own roles to perform with each movement we make to help strengthen our core. The rectus abdominis, located along the front of your abdomen, covers the upper and lower portion of your abdominal muscles, while the external oblique is on the sides and front of your abdomen. The internal oblique is located under the external oblique, running perpendicular to it. The transverse abdominis is located under the obliques; it is the deepest of the abdominal muscles and wraps around the spine for protection and stability. If you’re looking for that hourglass appearance, then you want to focus on your rectus abdominal muscles as well as your external obliques (Figure 1). There are several options for abdominal exercises: crunches, leg lifts, planks (Figure 2) and rotations. Crunches can be done lying on your back on a flat surface, or using a resist-aball or Bosu ball. There are even weight machines that you can use. All of these will give you results if you learn how to execute the movement correctly and do them two to three times a week (not daily). Leg lifts/raises or rotations (Figure 3) can be done either on a flat surface or using a Roman chair. Fitness Torso (abdominal) rotations – Start position Torso (abdominal) rotations – End position


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