11 Effective Twist Exercises For A Slim Waist

Practice these workout routines regularly to strengthen your core and get in top shape.

Reviewed by Rakesh Rathod, Certified Personal Trainer Rakesh Rathod Rakesh RathodCertified Personal Trainer facebook_icontwitter_iconlinkedin_iconyoutube_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MSc (Biotechnology), ISSA Certified Fitness Nutritionist Charushila Biswas MSc (Biotechnology), ISSA Certified Fitness Nutritionist Experience: 6 years
Edited by , BSc, Professional Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health Ravi Teja Tadimalla BSc, Professional Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health Experience: 8 years
Fact-checked by , MSc (Biotechnology), Certified Health & Nutrition Life Coach Payal Karnik MSc (Biotechnology), Certified Health & Nutrition Life Coach Experience: 2.5 years
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If you want a slender silhouette, you need to do twist exercises for a slim waist. Why? Because these exercises target the obliques, which other ab exercises like crunches, sit-ups, and planks don’t. As a result, the fat present at the sides of your midriff remains unattended. There are many ways to incorporate twist exercises into your ab exercise routine. These exercises also burn calories and strengthen the core muscles. They are great for whittling away the side fat that is stubborn like belly fat.

Turn up the volume of your workout music, and start doing these twist exercises to get toned abs and waist. Here are 11 twist exercises you can do to shed the flab and get a slim waist. Scroll down!

protip_icon Quick Tip
You can do a variation of the Russian twist called the leg-cross twists. Cross your right calf over the left one. Once you come back to the center, uncross your legs. Cross your left calf over your right one and twist. Once you come back to the center, uncross your legs.

1. Russian Twists

Russian twist exercise for a slim waist

This is a full abdominal twist, which involves balancing, strength, and isolation. It strengthens the core and cinches the waist by working the oblique muscles.

Muhammad Naveed, a blogger, spoke about the effect of doing 100 Russian twists daily for a week. He said, “I felt a sense of strength and stability in my center. It wasn’t like I noticed any changes regarding the look of my waistline, but I didn’t think I would in a week. However, it’s the interior that is important, and my stomach was feeling fantastic. (i).”

Target: Obliques, hip rotators, lower abs, and upper abs.

Steps

  1. Sit on a mat with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
  2. Lean back a little and lift your feet off the floor. You may place your hands on the mat for support.
  3. Once your body is balanced, bring your hands together (as shown in the picture) and roll your shoulders back. Look at your hands in front of you. Tighten your core and squeeze in your glutes. This is the starting position.
  4. Twist your upper body to the left. Try to touch the mat with your hands.
  5. Come back to the starting position and twist your upper body to the right. This completes one rep.
  6. Do 3 sets of 12 reps each.

2. Criss-Cross

Criss -cross exercises for a slim waist
Image: Shutterstock

Criss-cross, also known as bicycle crush, is a crunch exercise that involves a twist. So, you get the benefits of both exercises. It targets your core muscles, strengthens them, and gives you good cardio at the same time. A great way to attack that ab-flab!

Target: Obliques, rectusi  A pair of straight muscles located between the ribs and pubic bone, right at the abdomen area. muscles, hip flexorsi  A group of muscles located near the thighs that facilitate hip flexion and enable lower body movement. , quads, glutes, and hamstrings.

Steps

  1. Lie down on a mat. Bend your knees and lift your legs off the floor. Place your hands behind your head with your thumbs behind the ears. Lift your head and the back of your shoulders off the floor. Avoid tucking your neck in.
  2. Engage your core and relax your shoulders. This is the starting position.
  3. Extend your right leg and simultaneously twist your upper body to the left so that your right elbow touches your left knee.
  4. Come back to the starting position.
  5. Now, extend your left leg, twist your upper body to the right, and try to touch the left elbow with the right knee. This completes one repetition.
  6. Do 3 sets of 15 reps each.

3. Windmill

Woman performing the windmill twist exercise for a slim waist
Image: Shutterstock

The windmill is a great twist exercise for your abs, obliques, and glutes. You can do it with or without kettlebellsi  A steel ball with a handle that is used to perform various exercises that help improve flexibility and core strength. . Make sure you start with a lighter weight to prevent injuring your back and wrist. Also, if you have a lower back injury, do not do this exercise.

Target: Obliques, lower abs, shoulders, upper back, and glutes.

Steps

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and turn one foot out to stand in an L-shape position.
  2. Transfer your weight to the foot that’s straight, with your hip slightly pushed out.
  3. Pick up a kettlebell with one hand and hold it up by extending your arm.
  4. Place the other hand, palms open, on the inside of your thighs. This is the starting position.
  5. Now, inhale and lower your body by keeping both your legs straight, your arm still extended up. Try to touch the foot that’s turned out with your other hand. Look at the kettlebell as you lower your body.
  6. Pause for a moment, then get back up to the starting position. Exhale as you do so.
  7. Do the same on the other side.
  8. Do 2 sets of 8 reps on each side.

4. Plank Hip Twists

Woman performing plank hip twists for a slim waist
Image: IStock

This exercise is an absolute must to include in your workout regimen. It targets your lower belly fat, totally hits the muffin top, and works on your core muscles.

Target: Obliques, rectus muscles, lower back, and glutes.

Steps

  1. Get on your all fours.
  2. Make a fist, bend your elbows, and place them on the mat. Now, you are in a plank position. Tighten your core, squeeze your glutes, and keep your head, neck, spine, and hips in the same line. Avoid dropping your hips down or pikingi  A body posture where the hips are bent, and the knees are straight, allowing you to touch your toes or clasp your legs. them. This is the starting position.
  3. Now, twist your hips to the right and left without moving your upper body.
  4. Keep breathing and holding your core tight and glutes squeezed.
  5. Do 3 sets of 12 reps each.

5. Skater Lunge

Skater lunges for a slim waist

Take the regular lunges up a notch by adding a literal twist to them. Skater lunges are great for burning calories, targeting the waist area – especially the side fat – and shaping the hips and legs.

Target: Obliques, hip rotators, quads, hamstrings, glutes, and calves.

Steps

  1. Stand straight with your legs shoulder-width apart. Roll your shoulders back, push your chest up, and look forward. This is the starting position.
  2. Place your left foot diagonally behind your right foot. Extend your right hand behind, then bend your left elbow and bring it close to your chest.
  3. Now, hop and place your left foot back in its original position. Only this time, place your right foot diagonally behind your left foot.
  4. Hop again and place the right foot back in its place.
  5. Do this at a moderate pace.
  6. Do 3 sets of 12 reps each.
  7. You can also bend down to touch your foot when you do this exercise. Avoid bending down if you have lower back injury or pain.

6. Weighted Russian Twists

Weighted Russian twist exercise for a slim waist

Remember the Russian twist exercise we did at the beginning? Weighted Russian twists are the same but more challenging. You can hold a dumbbell, kettlebell, weight plate, or a medicine ball. The weight adds resistance to your movement, which makes your obliques work harder and shed the fat faster.

Target: Obliques, rectus muscles, and quads.

Steps

  1. Hold a medicine ball or any weight of your choice. Sit on the mat with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor, shoulders rolled back, and chest up. Look forward.
  2. Tighten your core and lift your feet off the floor. Lean back a little to balance your body on your hips. Keep your back straight. This is the starting position.
  3. Now, inhale and twist to your right. Exhale.
  4. Inhale and come back to the starting position. Without stopping, twist to your left. Exhale. This completes one repetition.
  5. Do 3 sets of 12 reps each.

7. Standing Bar Twists


Discover simple and effective ways to achieve a smaller and slimmer waist. Watch this video to help you get ready to slim down and tone up with these easy-to-follow exercises.

Standing bar twists are also known as oblique twists. They work on your shoulders, sides of your upper back, and your abs. They work the difficult areas that most twist exercises cannot reach. It’s a great workout to also get a good upper body warm-up.

Target: Obliques, lats, and deltoids (shoulders).

Steps

  1. Stand with your feet a little wider than shoulder-width apart.
  2. Place a bar (could be a barbell or a sturdy bar of any material) on your shoulders. Extend your arms on the bar and secure your wrists to grip it.
  3. Roll back your shoulders, with your chest out, and look forward. This is the starting position.
  4. Now, without moving the lower body, twist your upper body to the left and right. As you twist to either side, keep looking forward.
  5. Do 3 sets of 15 reps each.

8. Rotator Disc Twists

Rotator disc twists for a slim waist

Rotator discs are circular, flat discs. They are common gym and home gym equipment that effectively target the ab muscles and help get rid of side and belly fat. It is also a fun exercise. You may do it holding a chair or the wall for support. You can also do it without support once you are comfortable and have better balance and coordination.

Target: Obliques, lower abs, mid abs, and upper abs.

Steps

  1. Place the rotator disc on the floor.
  2. Step on it and keep your feet hip-width apart. Bend your knees a bit. Close your hands in fists and bring them close to your chest (as shown in the image). If you are feeling imbalanced, hold the back of a chair or a wall.
  3. Engage your core and start moving your legs together to the right and left. Do not twist your upper body.
  4. Do 3 sets of 30 reps each.

9. Banana Twist

Banana twist exercise for a slim waist

This is another similar exercise to the Russian twist. But, it includes sit-ups as well. It is tremendously effective in building core strength, toning, improving balance, and shedding fat from the abdominal area.

Target: Obliques, lower abs, upper abs, glutes, quads, and hamstrings.

Steps

  1. Lie down on the floor, with your legs together and your arms extended over your head.
  2. Lift your legs and arms off the floor. Engage your core muscles and squeeze your glutes. This is the starting position.
  3. Sit up. Bring your arms from above your head to near your knees, following an arched path. Simultaneously, flex your knees. Do not drop your feet to the floor.
  4. Without stopping, twist to the right and left. Exhale.
  5. Go back down to the starting position. Inhale.
  6. Do 3 sets of 8 reps each.

10. Medicine Ball Jump Lunge Twist

Medicine ball jump lunge twist exercise

Another good way to challenge your abs is to add a jump, weights, and upper-body twist to a regular lunge. It is a great full-body fitness workout that burns calories and tones the sides of your belly, glutes, and thighs.

Target: Obliques, lower abs, upper abs, glutes, quads, and hamstrings.

Steps

  1. Hold a medicine ball or any weight of your choice. Sit on the mat, looking forward, with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor, shoulders rolled back, and chest up.
  2. Extend your arms. Hold your core tight, roll your shoulders back, and look ahead. This is the starting position.
  3. Twist your upper body to the right. Follow the medicine ball with your eyes.
  4. Pause for a moment and come back to the starting position.
  5. Now, jump and land softly on the floor. This time, your left foot should be in front of your right foot. Flex your knees so that your left thigh is parallel to the floor.
  6. Twist to the left. Then, come back to the starting position. This completes one repetition.
  7. Do 3 sets of 12 reps each.
protip_icon Quick Tip
Ensure you do not twist your knees while doing this exercise to avoid severe injury. Before starting, make sure your core is engaged and your back is straight.

11. Shoulder Taps

Shoulder taps is a bodyweight exercise that targets and strengthens your core muscles. While it is similar to a plank in position as it requires you to keep your shoulders and hip steady, it is an active exercise in which you have to use your palms to alternately touch the opposite shoulder.

Target: Obliques, rectus abdominis, stabilizing muscles

Steps

  1. Start in a high plank position with your hands shoulder-width apart and your body forming a straight line from head to heels.
  2. Keeping your core engaged and hips stable, lift your right hand off the ground and tap your left shoulder.
  3. Return your right hand to the floor and then lift your left hand and tap your right shoulder.
  4. Continue alternating sides in a controlled manner, focusing on balance and preventing hip rotation.
  5. Perform 2-3 sets of 10-15 reps while maintaining proper form.

Infographic: Effective Twist Exercises For A Slim Waist

Twist exercises target the oblique muscles and strengthen the core. These exercises help in burning calories and slimming down your waistline. While we have covered all the important twist exercises in the article, you must be aware of the most effective ones to include in your routine. Check out the infographic below to learn more about the effective twist exercises for a slim waist.

effective twist exercises for a slim waist (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Conclusion

There’s no doubt that getting rid of belly flab is tedious and requires strict dedication. Thankfully, adding twists to your workout routine can help speed up the process. You will work all the ab muscles and get rid of the side fat and the front belly bulge quickly. So, go ahead and start doing these 10 ab twist exercises at least thrice a week. Don’t forget to eat healthy, stay hydrated, and sleep well too!

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s a torso twist?

When doing a torso twist, you rotate your entire upper body to the left and right as if you were doing a crunch. It is a dynamic stretching exercise that boosts flexibility, extension, and multi-planar movementsi  Movements of the joint that occur in more than one plane of motion, such as forward and backward, side-to-side, and rotational. .

Do standing torso twists work?

Standing torso twists target the abdominal and oblique muscles. They help stabilize the spine and warm up the core for an intense workout.

Is it good to twist your body?

Yes, twisting is good for the body. It helps improve stability and keep the spinal muscles mobile.

Do waist twists help with love handles?

Yes, waist twists such as Russian twists are perfect twist exercises to help get rid of the love handles and the stubborn fat on the sides of the stomach.

Should you avoid twisting at the waist?

It is best to avoid doing twist exercises if you have lower back pain. Consult your doctor before starting it to know if you are the right candidate for twisting exercises.

Key Takeaways

  • The exercises to help slim down your waistline include lunges, different twists, the crisscross, and the windmill.
  • The different twists you can try are Russian, plank hip, weighted Russian, standing bar, rotator disc, banana, and medical ball jump lunge twists.
  • You can do 2-3 sets of about 12-15 reps each to get an effective workout.

Personal Experience: Source

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Rakesh Rathod

Rakesh RathodCertified Personal Trainer

Rakesh Rathod is a certified fitness trainer and yoga instructor with more than 20 years of experience in the fitness industry. He also has a diploma in nutrition, level 1 in Krav maga, and is a bodybuilding contest coach. He specializes in weight loss training, knee pain and back pain rehabilitation, and prenatal and postnatal workouts. He has trained people...read full bio

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