How do I strengthen my upper abs?

A great exercise to strengthen the upper ab region is the ball crunch.  Perform the ball crunch by following the technique described below.  Lie with a stability ball under your low back and knees directly over ankles, with the feet on flat on the floor and hip-width apart.  Next, extend your entire back over the curve of the ball and cross the hands on the chest or position them behind the head.  Make sure to draw-in the belly button and squeeze the butt muscles while crunching the upper body forward.  Pause at the top and then lower the upper body over the ball to return to the starting position.  Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.  If the ball crunch is too challenging, try making it slightly easier by repositioning the body on the ball.  The  floor crunch may also be used as an alternative exercise.
There are many exercise you can do for your upper abs.  Depending your on what equipment is available to you wether at home or at a gym.  One of the best exercises to start out with is the stability ball crunch which you can have at your home or gym.  There are many exercises you can do at the gym with many pieces of equipment but many don't isoate the upper abdominals because of using your upper body too much.  Remember it is not how much weight you use or how many reps you do but how you do the exercise.  This is why the stability ball is one of the best exercises to use for safety and effectiveness.  The main things is contracting your abominals to make sure you are using the muscle and not going through the motions.  The stability ball is nice because you can adjust yourself to make it easier or harder based on your position.  Typically placing your lower to middle part of your back on the ball, legs at a 90 degree angle, hands above your head and slowly crunch up.  Make sure to tighten up your abs while  you go through your range of motion. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.