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Say Goodbye To Boring Crunches And Hello To Your Fab Abs!

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Say Goodbye To Boring Crunches And Hello To Your Fab Abs!
Say Goodbye To Boring Crunches And Hello To Your Fab Abs!

Say Goodbye To Boring Crunches And Hello To Your Fab Abs!

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Up and down. Up and down. Up-stop. Crunches, one the most boring and monotone exercises in the world, and what is worse is that they have been proven detrimental to your lower back as the repeated motion places a great deal of stress on it, and what’s worse is that people tend to do them in great numbers,so stop doing the tedious, ineffective and potentially dangerous exercise, because today you will be presented with many refreshing and effective alternatives to the standard “crunch”. Perform any of these exercises listed below about 10-12 times for 3-4 sets for a safe, effective and fun workout!

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Understanding the Exercise

Before we begin, please note that there is a link at the bottom of this article containing an infographic outlining the various muscles that make up the core, so you can refer to it whenever you find yourself wondering exactly what part of the core I am talking about. Let’s begin!

1. Half Banana


To do: Lie on back, bring both hands up, bring one leg up,”crunch”, alternate.
This exercise places a focus on your lower and upper rectus abdominous(middle of abs) and allows you to emphasize the external oblique of whatever side your foot is up on.

2. Oblique V Crunch


To do: Lie on left/right side, hand behind head, bring up torso and legs at the same time, alternate and repeat.
This exercise mainly focuses on your transverse abdominous and external oblique but activates your rectus abdominous by using to stabilize your core.

3. Kick Crunch

Kick-Crunch

 

To do: Stand up, raise left leg and bring down right arm at the same time, alternate and repeat.
This exercise actively engages the obliques and the middle section of your abs, effectively targeting most of your abdominal muscles, while also providing the benefit of intensity scaling, allowing for an added cardio benefit if you so wish.

4. T-Cross Sit-Up

T-Cross-Sit-Up

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To do: Lie flat on your back, arms spread out, lift left leg and right arm simultaneously and touch them together, alternate and repeat.
This exercise is similar to the Half Banana but specifically targets your obliques more than your rectus abdominous due to the twisting contraction.

5. Pilates Scissors


To do: Lie on your back with your shoulders and feet on the ground, lift one leg up at a time and hold it with your arms, alternate and repeat.

This exercise targets the rectus abdominous mainly but has the added benefit of allowing concentric overload, meaning you can hold your legs up for a set period of time, say 10 seconds while your abs are under tension to work them harder.

6. Butterfly Crunch


To do: Lie on back, soles of feet touching, hands straight overhead on the ground, then bring hands together and raise them together while also raising your feet, bring them back down and repeat.
This exercise is a little harder but allows for the lower and upper rectus abdominous to be worked at the same time in an effective manner.

7. Straight-Leg Sit-Up


To do: Lie on back, hands up and stretched out, feet stretched out on the floor, then raise your torso along with your hands upwards, back down and repeat.
This exercise, again, is a little more difficult because your feet start out flat on the floor giving you no basis for support or traction, however, this allows for a fuller contraction of your abs due to not receiving any help from your legs.

8. Coordination Fly


To do: Lie on back, hands at your sides of the ground and holding a pair of dumbbells, feet off the ground in a 90-degree position, then simultaneously lift your torso while bringing your arms together and stretching your feet out into a straight line.
This exercise is more complicated, involving several different muscles and adding a set of dumbbells, however, it allows for a more effective core workout as weight is added all while giving your chest a decent workout.

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9. Bicycle Crunches


To do: Lie on back, feet in a 90-degree position, hand behind on head, then attempt to touch your left leg with your right arm, alternate and repeat.
This exercise is similar and different to the Kick Crunch, different because it prioritizes your obliques rather than your rectus abdominous, but similar because it can be scaled in intensity to provide cardio benefits.

10. Double Crunch Pulse with Medicine Ball

Double-Crunch-Pulse-Medicine-Ball
To do: Lie on back, hand over chest holding a ball, legs straight up in the air, then contract your abs and release, repeat.
This exercise has a shorter range of motion but allows for a tighter contraction, also allowing you to control the time under tension of your muscles.

11. V-Sits


To do: Lie on back, arms off the ground touching your sides, feet off the ground, then bring knees up to your chest keeping your torso raised.
This exercise is one of the best you can perform for the middle section of your abs, more so than your upper or lower abs.

12. Reverse Crunch


To do: Lie on back, hands to your sides on ground, legs in a 90-degree position off the ground, then raise your legs until your butt comes off the ground.
This exercise is a great alternative to the regular crunch because it minimizes most of the stress your lower back is put under when performing regular crunches.

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13. Runner’s Crunch


To do: Lie on the ground, arms in a 90-degree position, feet stretched out on the floor, then go through the “running” motion.
This exercise doesn’t provide nearly as much contraction of your abdominal muscles as others on this list but can be used as a great cardio core workout.

14. Diamond Sit-Up


To do: Lie on ground in the butterfly crunch stance, then bring your arms up and down in between your legs, repeat.
This exercise is very similar to the butterfly crunch but allows for a deeper and longer range of motion,

15. V-Crunch


To do: Lie on you back, arms off the ground and behind you, legs outstretched and off the ground, then bring both legs and arms together, repeat.
This exercise is pretty much a combination of a regular crunch and reverse crunch, giving you on overall core workout.

Here is the infographic to help you identify the different parts of the muscles in your abdominal region.

 

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