These days you can’t turn on a TV without running across infomercials for a top selling ab crunch machine. All of these machines claim to provide rock hard abs and toned core muscles. But which type of ab machine is right for you? If you’re on a budget, your best bet will be to rely on foam rollers and ab roller wheels, as they they are a pretty effective way of exercising your core muscles.
If you frequent the gym then you already know that the most recommended exercise for building up ab muscles is called a crunch. From this type of position you will raise the upper torso about eight inches off the floor, while keeping the lower torso in contact with the floor. Performing crunches is effective and simple, but without the aid of an ab crunch machine, you’ll risk poor form, which can make any ab exercise ineffective. This is why we wanted to review some of the best ab workout machines for home use that can take the gym and bring it right into your living room!
Before getting your ideal ab machine you should look into a few of its aspects such as the comfort it provides, how useful it is going to be, its weight limit, and most importantly – its dimensions. The last part is really important since you will be putting this somewhere in your house, meaning it will have to fit and have around space around it for you to freely move without hitting anything. Lastly, keep your eyes open for machines that come with extra warranty or instructional DVDs as those are some great additional features.
Before we dive deeper into these machines and their key features, let’s take a look at a brief comparison chart between these machines.
Top Workout Machines Comparison Chart
Our Top Picks
Ab Coaster PS500
Our top rated product, the Ab Coaster PS500 has a lot to offer and it’s able to help you meet your fitness goals in the comfort of your own home. Described as a sturdy piece of equipment, the Ab Coaster is designed for both durability and comfort. A workout on this machine will affect the abs in much the same way as hanging leg raises. Hanging leg raises are incredibly hard to do and they’re one of the most commonly used exercises in an ab workout program. Check out more about it on its full review!
ProForm Ab Glider Platinum Ab Machine
The ProForm Glider does what most gliders do, but far better. It is more comfortable, more durable, and has a lot more additional items to its package than its competition. Apart from the practically sized glider, you will be getting 3 additional instructional DVDs on different exercises and an 8-week diet plan that will help you with your way to 6-pack glory. There is a ton of adjustability in this machine and you can go sideways, front to back or a combination between those movements, providing the ultimate workout for your core muscles. If you want to learn more about this glider, check out our full review by clicking the button below.
XMark Deluxe Power Tower and Heavy Bag Stand
Having a whole full-sized tower in your home might not be the best for your wallet but your body will surely thank you. Towers specialize in training basically any part of your body apart from your legs (although you can still train them). They are great for shoulder exercises, as well as arm, back, and core training sessions. Yes, they are a bit bulky in terms of dimensions and are expensive but nothing trains your body more than the variety of exercising options a training tower provides. To learn more about those options head over to our full review of the Xmark Deluxe Tower!
U.S. Jaclean USJ-804 Rodeo Core Compact Core Trainer
The U.S. Jaclean USJ-804 is a very unique training machine that falls into the “rodeo” category. These are relatively new to the market and haven’t yet made a name for themselves but are very effective. Their training potential is realized in quite a lot of muscle groups in your body including the back muscles, the muscles around your waist, upper legs, and all parts of your abdomen including the obliques. All that creates an insane core exercise without too much time spent on it, and a simple 10-20 minute session can deplete your energy supplies entirely. To learn more about this rodeo machine, head over to our full review of it!
Panasonic EU7805K Core Muscle Trainer
The Panasonic EU7805K muscle trainer is designed to stretch all of the user’s muscles in just one position. An effective piece of workout equipment, this device features exercises that involve twisting and up and down motions. Both actions are designed to push your core muscles to the limits, so it’s no surprise that consumers gave this model a high rating for its effectiveness. This machine is designed to benefit the consumer who is unable to perform more strenuous exercises because the device will not put strain on the user’s joints, which can be a common issue with other ab machines.
Ab Machines Buyer’s Guide
According to fitness experts, spot reduction isn’t possible. In order to lose weight in a specific area of the body, you need to lose the weight everywhere. An effective way to lose weight involves a three part plan: dietary changes, regular cardio workouts and regular muscle conditioning. If you’re significantly overweight it’s advised that you speak with your doctor regarding a safe diet that will reduce the intake of calories and fat.
Toning your abs will take dedication and includes an ab friendly diet and a commitment to workout at least four times a week. While many ab machine products boast that they can give you the rock hard abs you need by simply using the machine for five minutes a day or less, this is simply not true. A minimum of thirty minutes a day of intense exercise, including ab specific exercises is required in order to achieve results.
Which Attributes Your Tummy Sculpting Machine Should Have
Many ab machines are affordable and will include videos and exercise guides that provide mini-instructionals on how to use the machine and helpful workouts that are designed specifically to be used with a particular ab device. Several models will also provide the much needed head and neck support in order for the user to keep the correct form when executing ab exercises.
Any fitness professional will tell you that your form will be crucial when it comes to results. Since many machines are designed to make crunches easier to execute by requiring the user to use their arms in order to move the device forward, they can promote increased repetitions, more frequent workouts and longer sets.
The simple act of working out will cause you to sweat, elevate your heart rate and cause muscle soreness the next day. For many people this will automatically cause them to be more careful about what they eat throughout the day because they don’t want to hinder their fitness progress by making poor food choices.Lastly, the act of purchasing an ab machine will also force you to think more about your overall fitness and in turn, you’ll end up using the machine in order to get your money’s worth.
The type of machine you decide to purchase should not only be based on your budget, but your fitness goals and your current level of fitness. Some machines on the market are designed for beginners and can be used even by the most fit individuals. Keep in mind there are some devices that are only designed for individuals who are already fit, which means you won’t be able to use it correctly until your ab muscles are stronger.
Features To Look For In An Ab Training Machine
Purchasing an ab crunch machine is a big deal. Most of these machines, even the affordable ones, come at a high cost, so it is important to make sure you are getting a good deal when you do decide on one. This is why we also took a look at other machines that are far cheaper and do a good job of strengthening your core muscles while making you break a sweat.
It is wise to find a well-rounded ab machine that targets every part of the abdominal muscles. There are resisted ab crunch machines and these machines target certain parts of your abs, mainly the top muscles. This specific machine completely ignores the lower muscles an the obliques, leaving you with an uneven and incomplete ab workout. These types of machines will never reveal the six-pack you are likely hoping to gain from an ab machine. This is why it is important to know what is out there and what you are looking to gain from this machine.
If you are like most people, your goal is to get a six-pack, so it would be best to do some research and make sure the one you are choosing targets the lower abs, the obliques, and the upper abs at the same time. Otherwise, you may need to invest in several machines, which can be costly for you and your budget.
A torso machine works the obliques because it uses side-to-side motion. Basically any type that brings up the lower body close to the upper body will work your lower abs more than the upper.
Check into the Quality of the Machine
What is the quality of the machine like? There are so many ab machines on the market today, you will want to make sure you are buying something that is worth your money.
The best way to do this is to research reviews online from past customers who have actually purchased and also used the product before. This is the best way to find out if the exercise machine is worth your time and cash.
You want to find an ab crunch machine that has smooth moving mechanisms.
This and a machine that targets every inch of your abdominals will give you the best six-pack you have ever had or dreamed of.
This part of the process is very important because if you skip out on performing proper research of the machine you are looking to buy and just buy it on a whim, you will likely end up with a machine of poor quality or an overpriced machine. The ab crunch may end up breaking soon or needing costly repairs that make it not even worth your money.
Research, research, research because past reviewers can give you insight as to what you can expect from the machine and save you from a lot of trouble or hassle!
Is The Price Reasonable?
We all know it is very possible to spend too much money on something like an ab crunch machine. Perhaps you are brand new to a piece of workout equipment like this, or perhaps you are brand new to exercising and working out in general. If either of these are the case, you likely do not know what is reasonable when it comes to pricing and cost.
You do not want to get ripped off and spend more than the average person would on a machine like this, but you also do not want to find yourself in a situation where you did not spend enough and, as a result, received quality that matches the price.
Our suggestion is that you should expect to budget in between $200 and $300 if you are hoping to get a machine that is going to not only work but last you a lifetime. Most of the higher quality machines, if they even need repairs, will have lower costs when it comes to maintenance and repairs as well.
By investing more money upfront, you will be saving money in the long run. The cheaper machines may work at first, but they will eventually break on you and some of them are so poorly made, having repairs done may not even be an option for you.
Again, our suggestion is to go ahead and spend the money on the machine. If you cannot afford it right away, budget the equipment into your overall budget and when you have enough saved for the ab crunch you have your eye on, buy it! It is better to wait until you can afford rather than splurging on something cheaply made.
Check Into Weight Limits
Beware that some ab machines have certain weight limits on them. For example, if you are over 300 pounds, there are certain ab machines you are not recommended to use. On the other hand, there are some that are made especially for you and your weight.
This is very important because those weight restrictions are there for a reason. The last thing you want is to spend a ton of money on a quality machine and break it because you did not take the weight limit seriously. Make this part of your research and find the machine that fits you and your current weight best.
Ab Machines Usability
Who is The Ab Crunch Machine For?
The ab crunch machine is great for those who are living a somewhat active lifestyle already and want to fine tone and really target the abdominals. If you already have some base abs, you will benefit greatly from a machine like this.
The ab crunch machine takes the muscles that you already have and brings them out to where they are noticeable to not only you, but everyone else around you. It is also great for those who are active but live a pretty busy lifestyle. The ab crunch helps you get in that ab workout everyday or several days a week quickly.
Some people do not have time to get their yoga mat out and do a 20-minute ab workout. With an ab crunch machine, you can cut the workout time in half and still get an effective and quality workout in.
To summarize, if you already workout and are pretty active and have done ab workouts in other ways, without a machine, then you are the perfect person to try out an ab crunch machine.
Who is The Ab Crunch Machine Not For?
Now that we have clarified who the ab crunch machine is specifically for, we will touch on who this type of machine is not necessarily fit for. If you have never worked out a day in your life or if you do not consider yourself an active and fit person, you should probably not start off with one of these machines.
The machines seem to work best for those who have a base tone going when it comes to their abdominals. It is important to build up some muscle first before you throw yourself on a machine like this. Start by doing some basic crunches on the ground, lying on your back. You should be able to do a simple ab workout on the floor, with no machines and no equipment, without struggling and with proper form.
If you cannot keep proper form without a machine, then the machine will not benefit you in any way. These are just some things to keep in mind because if you purchase an expensive machine but skip the step of keeping proper form without the ab crunch, you will likely end up disappointed and with little to no results at all.
Ab Crunch Accessories: What Are the Best Ones and Do You Need Them?
There are so many different kinds of ab crunch accessories out there on the market today, it can be difficult to know which are your best buys and which ones you may actually need in order to succeed with this machine. We are going to cover some of the basic accessories and why they may benefit you and your workouts.
Buy the Workout Dvds Made Specifically for Ab Crunch Machines
The first accessories are the workout DVDs for the ab crunch machines. There are countless DVDs available that are created specifically for these machines to help you learn how they work and the best and most effective way to use them. We highly recommend purchasing at least one of the DVDs created for this, so you can make sure you are doing the workouts properly and targeting every inch of your abdominals possible.
There is, indeed, an improper way to workout, so do not risk falling into that trap. The DVDs are not expensive and are worth your while. If you are going to spend a couple hundred on a machine, you can afford to spend $20 on workouts that will show the best results.
Gel Pads to Really Feel the Change
Gel pads can make a great addition to the ab crunch machine. These pads ad comfort and ease to your workouts, helping you get more done in a shorter amount of time.
Perhaps you are unable to feel much contraction with your muscles, even when you workout harder. If that’s the case, these gel pads could be the answer to your problem. The pads help you reach comfort while also having a greater reach over more nerve fibers and muscles. This makes for a highly effective and successful workout.
The great thing is that these gel pads are typically pretty affordable. You can usually get a four pack of ab belt gel pads for just $15 online. They are cheap and easy to use and make a great addition to getting that six pack.
Purchase a Folding Equipment Mat for the Ab Crunch
Another great addition to the ab crunch is to purchase a folding equipment mat for the machine. It is not necessarily wise to just put the machine directly on the floor. It could leave marks that could permanently damage the floor. After purchasing a pricy machine, it is worth your while to invest a little more and buy a quality folding mat that is adjustable in size, so you can make sure your machine fits on it.
This will not only provide protection to your floors, but it will also make for a more comfortable workout by adding a bit of cushioning underneath you, rather than just a hard floor. The mat will help absorb impact and also eliminate any vibration from the workout.
This may not seem like such a big deal, but if you are using the ab machine even just a few times a week, it will make all of the difference in the world with your workouts and with the way your body feels afterwards.
Start Shopping for the Perfect Ab Crunch
Now that you know all of the things you need to think about regarding an ab crunch machine, you can start the fun process of shopping around for the best option for you. Just remember that everyone is different while you are browsing around. Not everyone will need the same accessories and the same machine.
Factor in your individual weight, your workout needs, and what will help you be more successful with the workout equipment you buy. The most important thing is to be sure you have the right machine for you and that you are performing the exercises with proper form on the floor before starting to use the ab crunch.