If the path to a flatter stomach were paved with crunches, every man with a gym membership would sport a six-pack.

“But crunches only flex your trunk,” says Todd Durkin, author of The IMPACT! Body Plan (R263, loot.co.za). “To sculpt a stronger, more chiselled core, you need to train it the way it functions.” Or, more specifically, all the ways it functions. The more than two dozen muscles between your hips and shoulders are what allow you to bend and rotate your torso. They also stabilise your spine as you mow the lawn, carry groceries, do push-ups, go for a run and otherwise go about the motions of daily life. That’s why trying to build a solid centre with only crunches, which target your rectus abdominis (the six-pack muscle), is like trying to build powerful legs by focusing only on your quads. The result is all show and no go. Update your ab routine with the following six moves. “They’ll challenge your core from every angle, making you stronger in everything you do,” says Durkin. They’ll also give you something to bare at the beach.