One dumbbell, four exercises and this standing ab workout for a stronger core

It won't just strengthen your core, but improve your posture and stability too

Woman doing standing ab exercise
(Image credit: Getty)

Don’t quite like doing plank? Are crunches your worst enemy? You're in luck! This workout doesn’t require you to do any floor ab exercises, so you can safely erase sit-ups out of your mind too. In fact, this entire core workout is done completely standing and all you’re going to need for it is one dumbbell and we've got some great options in our best dumbbell guide.

Standing ab workouts are just as effective as floor workouts, if not more. When you're standing, your stability and balance is challenged even further, as opposed to when you're lying down. A lot of standing ab exercises also recruit additional muscles in the body, such as your glutes and arms, to help complete the movements and maintain your posture. Overall, they're pretty fantastic and a good way to stop your usual ab workout getting boring.

What's great about this workout is that the exercises are simple, but really effective. They're beginner-friendly, but will challenge your core as you try to stay upright. There's only four exercises, so this workout is ideal for adding onto the end of a longer one as a finisher. You'll do eight reps of each exercise (on both sides of single side movements) and you're going to do three rounds of the workout in total. Here's your workout:

  • Overhead dumbbell marches
  • Dumbbell wood chopper
  • Dumbbell press with knee twist
  • Knee repeater

We hope that fired your core up, but in a different kind of way, if you enjoyed it then give this other 6-move standing ab workout a go. For other ways to build your six-pack and core strength, an elite fitness expert shares the two ab exercises you'll need or you could always invest in a piece of gym equipment, like an ab roller.

Bryony Firth-Bernard
Staff Writer, Active

Bryony’s T3’s official ‘gym-bunny’ and Active Staff Writer, covering all things fitness. In her spare time, you will find her in her natural habitat - the gym - where her style of training is a hybrid of bodybuilding and powerlifting. Bryony loves writing about accessible workouts, nutrition and testing innovative fitness products that help you reach your fitness goals and take your training to the next level.