Many have a problem with their belly protruding (sticking out) even when in single digit bodyfat.
My gut would stick out and it bothered me to no end.
I did crunches, leglifts and planks and a lot of them,
thinking my abs were weak and that I needed to tighten them up.
Then a few years ago I came across articles by Vince Gironda.
He stated that exercises like sit-ups and crunching did more damage than good,
even causing belly protrusion.
I, having mostly done crunches and sit-up type exercises with little result found this intriguing.
Exercises such as tummy vacuuming and frog crunches (not really a crunch) were the stable of his abs workout and he had a fantastic set himself to show for it.
Researching the mechanics of the movements I discovered more and more reasons for potbelly syndrome.
Having strong visible abs has very little to do with it as the deep abdominals that keep the tummy tight. Your posture can affect protrusion as well.
Forward tilting hips, causing lordosis are the main culprit along with a relatively weak upper back that will cause your shoulders to slump forward and chest drop down, pushing your belly out.
This is a very common problem today since everyone is sitting all day hunched over a keyboard or phone. The already strong hip flexors become shorter and the thorax weakens from inactivity.
Simply adding these exercises to the warm up
should quickly produce result:
face pulls, wall slides, band pull apart, hip mobility and stretching the hip flexors.
I also recomend doing the two exercises I describe below.
In my case my belly got flatter in about two weeks.
I also improved drastically in my squats and deadlifts due to a more stable core.
Tummy vacuuming: It strengthens your deep abs all around your midsection. Creating god’s weightbelt.
This video should get everyones attention. youtube.com/watch?v=slhc_d9MLSg
Horse stance: This is a stable in almost every martial art.
Take a wide stance and do a half squat, toes forward, hold that position and draw your bellybutton down into the pelvis, at the same time draw your anus up into the pelvis.
Hold for as long as possible and do a a few sets through the day.
Train for life