Don’t do the bike maneuvering exercise unless you want strong abs and a flat stomach.
Being the same exercise as Pilates Criss Cross, the bicycle maneuver is rated the best abdominal exercise by the American Council on Exercise. Since you incorporate bending and rotating your core into one exercise, this is a great abs workout. Also, no special exercise equipment is needed to perform the bicycle maneuver.
Strengthen the external oblique abdominal, internal abdominal oblique, rectus abdominis, and transversus abdominis muscles by doing this exercise. Compression of the abdominopelvic cavity is the main action of these four muscles. Flexion of the spine is also an action of the oblique and rectus muscles of the abdomen; while the obliques also rotate the spine.
It will be easier for you to get up from a sitting or lying position, support your abdomen, and keep your back in good alignment by strengthening these muscles. Your physical appearance will also improve.
Although this is a difficult exercise, the health benefits make this exercise worth doing regularly as part of your fitness program.
You may have a tendency to lift your torso with your arms and hands while doing this exercise. If you place your hands just behind your ears instead of clasping them behind your head, you can avoid this trend. By using this hand placement technique, you will be more likely to lift your torso with your abdominal muscles rather than your arms.
Begin by lying on an exercise mat with your lower back pressed against the mat. Put your hands next to your head and over your ears. Raise your knees to form a 90-degree angle with your vertical thighs and horizontal shins. Extend your right leg with your leg 30 to 45 degrees above the ground. Keep your left thigh vertical and your left shin horizontal. Lift your shoulders off the mat with your abs and twist to touch your left knee with your right elbow. Switch legs and twist in the opposite direction to touch your right knee with your left elbow. Maintain relaxed, even breathing throughout the workout. Continue until your muscles are fatigued.
Be persistent and try to do a few more reps of this difficult exercise each day. In a short period of time, you will be doing 5 to 10 or more repetitions every day and you will develop a strong and firm abdomen.