Weight Loss

Got 15 Minutes? Strengthen Your Core With Kayla Itsines’s Low-Impact Express Ab Workout

We love Kayla Itsines’s heart-pumping HIIT workouts that will leave you dripping with sweat. She’s not afraid to throw in a burpee (or several!), jumping jacks, jump squats, and other bodyweight moves that are great for cardio but not so good on your joints if repeated over and over. This is why she has released a new eight-week program on the Sweat app called Low Impact With Kayla, which is full of highly effective workouts with no jumping or burpees.

Itsines was actually inspired to create the program by her mom, who wanted to join her daughter’s popular workouts but didn’t want to perform all the high-impact movements. The Sweat cofounder realized other people had similar hesitations to participating in her high-impact workouts. “Listening to the challenges women face with their workouts, I’ve realized that jumping exercises have been a barrier to many women starting and continuing their fitness journey,” she told POPSUGAR. “Whether you are looking to reduce joint pressure or you simply don’t enjoy jumping, it can be really challenging to know how to modify your workouts to suit your needs. I wanted to provide an achievable low-impact program that allows women to enjoy their workout without any jumping.” Plus, the workouts are quiet, so they’re perfect for those living in an apartment or the early risers who don’t want to wake up their roommates and partners.

And just because the workouts are low-impact doesn’t mean they’re not effective. “It is a common misconception that low-impact workouts are not effective for building strength and fitness,” she said. “Low-impact workouts focus on challenging specific muscle groups through dynamic movements to help improve muscle definition and strength.”

Itsines gave us a taste of what the eight-week program will entail with this 15-minute low-impact express ab workout that’s designed to strengthen your deep abdominals, obliques, and lower back to increase the strength and stamina of your core muscles. Itsines told POPSUGAR that strengthening your core is important because even if you don’t realize it, your core muscles affect everyday movements: sitting up out of bed, carrying heavy objects, and your posture. A strong core is foundational for all strength training and movement and can help reduce injury.

Itsines said these express workouts are part of her low-impact plan and that “when it comes to structuring your workout week, it’s important to listen to your body and do what feels right for you.” Like with her other programs, she also suggests two to three sessions of low-intensity steady-state cardio (LISS) per week.

15-Minute Low-Impact Express Ab Workout

Equipment needed: Yoga mat

Warmup: Itsines recommends taking a few minutes to warm up before the workout with three to five minutes of cardio, such as jogging in place or skipping to get your heart rate up and warm up your muscles. After the brief cardio sesh, she recommends completing a few dynamic stretches such as leg swings, arm circles, and torso twists.

Cooldown: After the workout, she suggests taking three to five minutes to walk to slowly lower your heart rate and help your body cool down, then spending a few minutes doing some static stretches to increase flexibility and range of motion.

Directions: Complete each exercise below for 30 seconds, moving on to the next move with no rest for three minutes of work total. This completes one lap. After each lap, rest for 30 seconds. Complete four full laps for a 15-minute workout. Scroll through for instructions on how to do each exercise.

Exercise Time
Plank Rock 30 seconds
Single-Arm Superman 30 seconds
Heel Tap 30 seconds
Russian Twist 30 seconds
Modified Ab Bike 30 seconds
Flutter Kicks 30 seconds

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