Flab around the sides and waist is generally directly associated with overall body fat; the more fat you have, the more it accumulates around your middle. Abdominal flab is not only annoying, but also it’s unhealthy. The Mayo Clinic notes that excess belly fat can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and some cancers. Fortunately, there are several good exercises for flab on the sides and waist that will help improve your health and physique.
Although they’re referred to as love handles, there’s nothing to love about the excess flab at the sides of your waistline. The muscles underneath that layer of fat are known as your obliques. Although their function is to rotate your torso, it’ll take more than torso rotations to get rid of the fat. Reducing fat in one area of your body isn’t possible. Instead, focus on losing weight from your entire body, and as the fat reduces, so will the fat around your middle.
Exercises to Reduce Side Fat:
1. Side Bridge:
The side bridge is a good exercise to work the oblique muscles that lie beneath your side flab. Working and tightening these muscles will create a slimmer waistline. Lie on your right side on the floor or exercise mat.
How To Do:
- Support your upper body on your right elbow, place your left hand on your hips, stack and extend your legs.
- While exhaling, contract the muscles on the right side of your abdomen to lift your hips off the floor.
- Pause at the top of the movement then slowly lower back to the floor.
- Complete 10 to 20 repetitions then repeat the exercise with your left side.
2. Around the World Obliques:
How To Do:
- Stand with your legs wider than shoulder-width apart, toes turned out just a little bit, tailbone tucked. With a very light weight in your hands (5 pounds at most—or you can even hold a pillow—just to keep anchored so you don’t feel the move in your lower back) extend arms up straight above your head as far as you can.
- “It should really feel like a stretch,” says Stokes. Then, bend from the hips and reach your body as far as you can to the right, hips and shoulders square forward.
- At the last second when you can’t reach any more, rotate toward the floor.
- Twist your body back to face front, exhale and pull back up to center.