Oblique Crunch

The Oblique Crunch (also known as the Twisting Crunch and Twisted Crunch) is a slight variation of the Ab Crunch.

The main difference in performing this exercise is that you "twist" your body when you do it so that your left elbow heads towards your right knee (and vice versa).

The main difference regarding the muscle groups involved is that, where the Ab Crunch concentrates on your Rectus Abdominus (i.e. the front part of your abs), the Oblique Crunch concentrates more on your obliques - the muscles to the side of your abs.


How to perform the Oblique Crunch

  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 right shoulder blade off the ground moving your right elbow towards your left knee. This results in a "twisting" motion, and is why this exercise is often referred to as a "Twisted Crunch".
  4. Feel the squeeze for a second.
  5. Slowly return to the starting position.
  6. Repeat steps 3 and 4 for your other side (i.e. move your left elbow towards your right knee)
  7. Repeat steps 3 - 6 until you've completed the desired number of reps.
Number of Reps

3 sets of 25 reps. Try adding weight if you find this too easy and you're trying to build muscle size/strength, or, if you're not trying to build muscle size, just increase the number of reps.

Muscles Used

Primary Muscles


Sometimes referred to as: Waist (sides), Upper hip, Oblique muscles

Secondary Muscles

Rectus Abdominis (also known as Abs, Abdominals, front Abs)

Psoas major (also known as Hip Flexors, Hip)

Stabilizer Muscles None of great significance

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