Weekend Challenge: Lower Abdomen Toner

This weekend’s exercise is a simple leg lift that strengthens your lower abdominal muscles, but it’s unique in its method. It utilizes the hip flexors and lower back to work the hard-to-target muscles around the belly button. The Lower Abdomen Toner also helps to correct anterior pelvic tilt.

Let’s start by taking a close look at the hip flexors and their role in abdominal strength and bone health.

Why:

The lower abs can be challenging to activate. Sitting, especially for extended periods of time, contributes to weak lower abs and causes the hip flexors to adapt to the seated position by becoming chronically shortened. Then the hip flexors lose the strength and flexibility to function optimally.

In turn, these issues can bring about an anterior pelvic tilt, where the pelvis tips forward, causing the glutes to poke outward. This weekend’s exercise counteracts this “swaybacked” position by flattening the lower back.

Because prolonged sitting is so prevalent in modern society, engaging the lower abs and hip flexors needs to be done deliberately in exercises like this one because day-to-day life does not provide many opportunities for these areas to be worked.

What Do The Hip Flexors Do?

The obvious role of the hip flexors is to lift the legs up. Flexion is accomplished via muscle contraction, and it involves decreasing the angle between bones; so the closer you bring your leg up to your body (such as lifting your leg to go up stairs), the more you are decreasing the angle between your upper leg bone (femur) and pelvis.

The hip flexors’ less obvious roles include stabilizing the pelvis and lumbar vertebrae and strengthening the lower abdominal muscles. And when it comes to bone health, the hip flexors are crucial – exercising them stimulates bone growth in the hips and lower back (per Wolff’s law), two key areas of concern for many Savers.

Now let’s take a look at how to do this weekend’s challenge.

How:

Use an exercise mat or a carpeted area.

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent. Take one hand and slip it under your lower back, palm down.
  2. Using your lower abdominal muscles, push downward on your hand, pressing toward the ground.
  3. Now bring your feet up off the ground, keeping your knees bent – your shins should be parallel to the floor (making a “tabletop”).
  4. While pressing down onto your hand that’s under your lower back, move one foot down, touch the ground briefly, and then bring it back to the starting position.
  5. Repeat this about 10 times (as your fitness level allows), and then relax.
  6. Press down again on your hand and lift the other leg 10 times.
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If you would like to continue working the same areas, but in different ways, try practicing these Weekend Challenges:

The Weekend Challenges not only work well with each other; they also work with the Densercise™ Epidensity Training System. While Savers often ask if Densercise™ includes the same exercises as the challenges, it doesn’t. But rest assured that all the exercises are intended to build and strengthen your bones, and are a vital part of reversing osteoporosis.

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Do you have any favorite exercises for your bones? If you do, or if you have any other thoughts on today’s topic, please feel free to share with the community by posting a comment below.

Have a great weekend!

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18 comments. Leave Yours Now →
  1. Lila Mora December 9, 2017, 11:30 am

    Are the exercises available in a paper format? I am interested in them but do not want to view them on a iPad, phone or computer.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA December 9, 2017, 11:44 am

      Hi Lila,

      Densercise is not available in print format, but you are welcome to print it yourself or send the link to your local office supply store and have it printed for just a few cents a page. 🙂

  2. Paula Richardson December 4, 2017, 6:32 pm

    Txs Viv for the exercise routine I really needed this
    Happy Holidays

  3. JK December 4, 2017, 5:10 pm

    I started your Densercise program 4 weeks ago and just finished the 3rd day of Week 4. Since there are no more exercises, do I now repeat the 4 week program continually throughout the year(s)? I realize I can also add your weekend challenges which I appreciate receiving, but don’t think that’s sufficient for 3 days/week.

  4. Char December 3, 2017, 11:20 pm

    I read that jogging for one minute daily was good for bones. However, my spine has fractured before, and wonder if that one minute could cause problems.

    • Frances December 6, 2017, 5:29 am

      I was advised to use a rebounder/mini-trampoline 5-10 min. a day, just walking on the spot. I don’t bounce, just swing arms as in a brisk walk. I’m 73.

  5. Anne December 3, 2017, 5:02 am

    I fully agree with you Della, staring at the computer for too long affects my back also, i have Osterpooris in my back and am sure other people have the same or similar problem. I also like too read in print as I can observe the information easier.

  6. Elaine December 2, 2017, 8:17 pm

    In trying to do the exercise, I find that I have the strength to lift my head off the floor but not to hold it there while I do the exercise. Nothing is said in the directions that the head is to be lifted but in the active diagram it looks like it is. Can the head be on the floor and the exercise still be effective? Or could I prop it up with a pillow? Many thanks

  7. Della December 2, 2017, 2:44 pm

    I have wanted the books you offer for sale; however, with ebooks, staring at a computer screen for long periods of time is not good for my eyes and back problems. I’d prefer a DVD of the suggested densersizes. Thank you for the opportunity to express my opinion.

    • Anne December 3, 2017, 6:00 am

      I fully agree with you Della, staring at the computer for too long affects my back also, i have Osterpooris.

    • Anne December 3, 2017, 5:55 am

      I fully agree with you Della, staring at the computer for too long affects my back also, i have Osterpooris in my back and am sure other people have the same or similar problem. I also like too read in print as I can observe the information easier.

  8. Susan December 2, 2017, 10:28 am

    Are your books available to purchase in print version?

    • Anne December 2, 2017, 11:42 am

      Thank you for your reply, I also would like a printed version and am sure many other people would. I live in England does that make a difference too you contacting me.

    • Save Institute Customer Support December 2, 2017, 10:56 am

      Hi Susan,

      All of our books are ebooks, which are digitally delivered to your inbox as PDF files. We do not have them available in print.

  9. Anne December 2, 2017, 5:46 am

    I find most of your messages too long many of them are repeating themselves.
    I could not report the above in your survey may be you should look at the reason why? Most of your emails are very interesting. Can you include more information about Epelpsey which can sometimes brake bones.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA December 2, 2017, 9:30 am

      Thank you for your honest feedback, Anne, and for your idea about researching epilepsy. If you find the e-mail messages long, you can always scroll down to the link, which will take you directly to the article. 🙂

  10. Rob December 2, 2017, 4:57 am

    I ordered the Bone Savers program for my 87yr old mom whose recent bone scan shows advanced osteoporosis. Her doc said she is at risk for spontaneous fractures and suggested an annual Reclast infusion. After considering the downside to bisphosphonates she doesn’t want to do that, but neither does she feel she has the strength or even motivation to make what to her seem overwhelming lifestyle changes of the Savers program. I hope to support her in making whatever small, gradual changes she can. For my part, I plan to integrate the program into my own life too. Thanks for listening.

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