Gemma Atkinson: My favourite muscle-toning moves
by Amelia Glean
Following our exclusive interview with the Strictly star in our Celebrity Secrets Holiday Body issue, Gemma Atkinson reveals two additional fitness moves for boosting body confidence this summer.
“You can do all the sit ups in the world, but the best way to get abs is to be clean and consistent with your diet. However, for abdominal strengthening, I love mountain climbers in the plank position with a slow and controlled tempo. Remember to keep your bum down, your shoulders over your wrists and contract your abs on every rep,” says Gemma.
Do: Five sets of 20 reps with 10 second rest Isolates: Abs
- Place your hands directly under your shoulders with your fingers facing forward and slightly outward. Keep your core engaged by squeezing your stomach muscles. Your body should be in a straight line from your crown to your heels.
- Lift one foot and begin bending the knee as you pull it up between the front of your body and the floor. Bring the knee forward in one smooth, controlled motion. Once you’ve raised your knee as far as you can, contract and hold your abs briefly but forcefully.
- Relax your midsection and push your knee back toward your other foot slowly. Then, bring the other knee forward, moving fluidly and squeezing your abs.
“To get rid love handles the first thing you need to control is your diet. But holding the plank and side plank will also help tighten and strengthen your obliques (your side abdominals). Start with around 20 seconds on each side and as you get stronger, you can hold them for longer or raise your leg to make it harder,” says Gemma
Do: Three sets of 20 seconds with 30 seconds rest Isolates: Obliques
- Turn onto your right side with your legs extended and your feet and hips resting on the ground and stacked on top of each other.
- Place your right elbow directly under your shoulder to prop up your torso and align your head with your spine.
- Gently contract your core and lift your hips and knees off the floor; this strengthens your sides and deep ab muscles.
- Hold for 20 seconds, gradually working up to a minute, and return to the starting position. Roll onto the other side and repeat.