Exercising is needed for increasing muscle strength and mass. When it comes to abdominal area, it can be divided into lower, upper and side areas. All of these regions should be developed and they need special attention. Lower abs should be maximally focused, because while working out that part, all other abdominal muscles are affected, which is not the case with upper and side abs. When it comes to abdominal exercises for women and men, generally they are the same. Most important would be crunches and sit ups. The first exercise is for lower abs and the second for upper. Some experts would say that it would be for the best to work out lower abs first for the best results.
Crunches are very effective but also not so easy to perform. They are done with moving the knees toward chest, while torso is also lifted up. This is the basic form, but there are also many variations that might prove to be even more effective than the basic type. There are crunches that include holding torso in mid air while performing bicycle motions with legs. Also, there are crunches with trying to reach the right knee with left elbow and vice versa (while hands are behind the head). There are standard leg raising, for those who find crunches to be difficult. Only legs are raised, while torso is on the floor.
While performing sit ups, only torso is raised. Lately, the experts claim that it would be better not to lift up the torso completely but only up to about 45 degrees from the ground. Neck and head should be straight without bending the head towards the chest. This is important in order to avoid certain neck injuries. There are also forms that do not require too much strength and can be applied even while working in the office, etc. All that is required is pulling the stomach in, and holding it like that as long as possible. This muscle contraction does not require too much strength and can be done by everyone. The effect is not huge, but with constant exercising, it can contribute to the overall development of shape and strength.