Last Updated on November 12, 2022 by TJ Daniels, Certified Personal Trainer
If you’ve decided to get in shape and really work on your abs, you might be tempted to go all-out and work your abdominal muscles every single day.
While there are plenty of trainers out there who will encourage you to train your abs on a daily basis, there seem to be just as many trainers cautioning against daily ab workouts because of the potential risks.
Are you also wondering, “How often should I do abs?”
So, should you train your abs every day? Are every day ab exercises even beneficial? Is it even safe? Or how often should you train your abs to develop that six pack?
We’re going to break down all the potential benefits and dangers of everyday ab training in this article so that you can decide for yourself.
The Benefits Of Doing An Ab Workout Every Day
We’re going to get into the dangers of daily ab exercises in a moment, but first, it’s true that there are several potential benefits to a strict daily ab regimen.
These are as follows:
If your abdominal muscles get used to daily exercise, the chances are that the muscles in this area will develop better endurance and you will burn body fat.
Your abdominal muscles can be divided into 4 different muscles located across the front of your torso as well as the sides.
You have the transverse abdominis, which is the muscle across the front of your torso that is responsible for spinal stability.
Then there’s the rectus abdominis, which you would focus on if you were trying to develop a 6-pack.
Your external obliques are found on the sides of your torso, running from your ribs to your hips. Under the external obliques, you also have the internal obliques.
All of these muscles can improve in terms of endurance if you train them every day.
However, if you want to increase the endurance of all of these muscles, you’ll need to perform a range of exercises, which will probably involve changing up your ab workout day by day.
Eventually, your muscles will get used to the same movements performed at the same level of intensity, so if you want to keep improving, variety, as well as consistency and frequency, is very important.
Better All-Round Athleticism
Advanced athletes might find that working on their abs every day improves their general athletic performance.
After all, your abs are part of your core, and building a strong core will improve overall mobility and athleticism.
The reason we’ve specified experienced or advanced athletes in this section, though, is because only the fittest and athletic individuals can really work out their abs each day without risking an injury.
Athletes already have a good level of endurance, so training abs on a daily basis shouldn’t put too much strain on the muscles.
With that being said, most experts recommend an ab training program of no more than 6 days per week even for advanced athletes, allowing 1 day for rest and recuperation of this muscle group.
Reduced Back Pain
Strengthening your core muscles is one of the best ways to relieve back pain, especially in the lower back.
If you’re suffering from chronic back pain and have been assessed to check for other possible causes, you could benefit from a more intensive ab training routine.
The reason strong abs are one of the best remedies for back pain is that it contributes to a strong core which ensures better stability.
Remember, the role of the transverse abdominis muscle is to keep your spine stable.
The more you train your abs, the stronger your core will become, and the more stability you will experience in your lower back.
This is why some trainers will encourage you to work out with a focus on abs as many times as you can per week, although again, overdoing it could cause you to injure yourself, resulting in even more pain.
Injury Or Surgical Recovery
The last thing you probably want to do while recovering from surgery or have just given birth is to start an intense ab workout program, but hear us out!
If you’ve had surgery on your back, an abdominal workout per day will help you to regain strength and reduce pain in your back muscles.
Similarly, if you have just experienced childbirth, your abdominal muscles will take a while to recover and return to their pre-pregnancy state.
Working your abs on a daily basis will speed up the recovery process and make your abs feel stronger.
Risks Of Working Your Abs Every Day
The biggest risk that comes with doing an ab workout every day is that you might injure yourself.
If you don’t give yourself at least one rest day per week, you run the risk of over-straining your muscles or developing a condition like tendonitis.
As we mentioned earlier, most experts recommend that even professional athletes take a rest day from ab training every week to be on the safe side.
This means that if you’re a beginner at working out, you have a much greater risk of injury because your ab muscles haven’t had the chance to build up much endurance.
Add to that the fact that if you’ve just started working out, you may not have mastered proper form, and you can appreciate how dangerous working your abs every day can be if you’re not a pro athlete.
Should You Really Train Your Abs Every Day?
So, based on all the information we’ve provided in this article, is it really a good idea to do an ab workout every day?
If you have a very strong core (basically, if you’re a very athletic person), you probably don’t have much risk of injuring yourself by training your abs every day and will quickly burn body fat.
However, if you incorporate a wide variety of exercises into your ab training regimen, you can train just 3 times a week and still significantly strengthen your core and continue to make progress in terms of endurance.
Basically, if you put thought into the workouts you do and target each different abdominal muscle, you enjoy all the benefits outlined above without having to go without your rest day.
In our opinion, you shouldn’t try to work out your abs every day unless you’re a highly trained athlete, and even then, you should still try to get a rest day each week.
Rest days are really important because they allow your muscles to heal from the micro-tears created by strength training, and it’s this healing process that contributes to muscle growth.
Plus, rest days prevent your muscles from getting overly tired, which means you’ll be able to complete all your exercises with proper form and really give it your all when you do train.
Final Thoughts – How Often Should You Train Your Abs
So, how often should you train your abs?
As much as it might be tempting to create a 7-day-per-week ab workout routine if you want to improve your core strength and get those coveted 6-pack abs, doing so might not be the best idea.
Working your abs 7 days per week comes with an increased risk of injury, meaning that the only people who can safely train abs this often are experienced athletes.
If you’re newer to strength training, please start with an ab workout plan of no more than 6 days per week.
You can easily improve your core strength and posture while relieving back pain with just 3 to 4 days of abdominal training each week.