The Stomach Crunch

Stomach crunches are similar to sit-ups but easier. They're easier on your back too. Actually, sit ups really aren't that effective if you want to exercise your abs. Sit ups work your psoas muscle, which is more responsible for your back than your stomach. Stomach crunches are much more effective for working your abs.

Technically, "stomach crunch" is not the correct term. "Ab crunch", or even "abdominal crunch", is a more precise term, as the crunch affects your abdominal muscles - not your stomach!

Stomach crunches are best performed the end of your workout. The movement should be slow and controlled. Don't be tempted to rock yourself back and forward to try to get a few more out. It's better to do fewer crunches with good form than to do more crunches with bad form.

Performing the Stomach Crunch

The stomach crunch works your lower stomach (or should I say, "lower abs").

  1. Lie on the floor with your legs bent, your feet flat on the floor. If you prefer, you can keep your legs bent at a 90 degree angle so that the bottom of your feet are vertical.
  2. Place your hands on the back of your head, or if you prefer, cross them over your chest.
  3. Lift your shoulder blades off the ground moving your elbows towards your knees. Don't try to lift your whole back - just your shoulder blades.
  4. Squeeze your abs for a second.
  5. Slowly return to the starting position.
  6. Repeat steps 3 - 5 until you've completed the desired number of reps.

The Reverse Crunch

The reverse crunch works your lower abs.

  1. Lie on the floor with your legs in the air and bent slightly with your ankles crossed.
  2. Place your arms on the floor beside you, withy your palms to the floor.
  3. Keeping your back straight, slowly raise your hips off the ground.
  4. Hold for about 2 - 3 seconds, sqeezing your ab muscles. Make sure your back is straight and your head is on the floor.
  5. Slowly return to the starting position.
  6. Repeat steps 3 - 5 until you've completed the desired number of reps.

How many do I do?

You should aim for 3 sets of 25 reps (repetitions). If you can't do 25, don't worry, do as many as you can. After a few days, try increasing your reps a little. Then after another few days, try increasing again etc. Keep doing this and you'll be doing 25 reps in no time!

The Truth About Abs

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About Me

Hi, I'm Ian. Health and fitness is an integral part of my life. I believe that keeping fit and eating well can help you appreciate life so much more. If you're looking for me, you'll probably find me in the gym or outside enjoying the great outdoors!

About This Site

I created so that I could share my knowledge and experience in the area of fitness, nutrition, and muscle building exercises. Many people don't know where to start when it comes to fitness and I hope this website can be a good starting point.

About Strength

Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength. - Arnold Schwarzenegger