Stomach crunches help tone your abs, which, in turn, support your spine. They also help you develop toned, sexy abs. If you’re doing crunches, but not getting the results that you expect, then follow this checklist to get back on track.
- The Crunch
- Healthy Diet
- Cardiovascular exercises
The crunch movement can be broken down into a series of distinct phases:
Warm up before you start doing crunches. A brisk walk will do the trick well. Make sure that you exercise on a comfortable surface, like an exercise mat.
Lie on the floor, with you back and feet planted firmly. Your knees should be bent. Place both of your hands behind your head.
Locate and isolate your lower abdominal muscles. Contract them – they should move up and in. This will help to stabilize your back as you lift. Don’t tense your neck, and try not to bend your lower back.
Now take a deep breath. Don’t forget to breathe using your diaphragm.
2. Lift (Stomach Crunch)
Slowly lift your upper back, shoulders and neck off of the floor. Keep your head supported with your hands, but don’t pull on it. Get to an angle of about 30 degrees off of the floor.
You need to restrict the lifting to the abdomen only. Don’t use your hands, or arms, to lift yourself up. Don’t tense your neck either – use your hands to support your head.
Make sure that you look ahead, almost at the ceiling. This will help you keep your neck and back in line. Keep your chin off of your chest, pretend there is an orange under your chin.
While lifting, keep your abdominals tensed, and breath out slowly. Exhale, until you come to the end of your breath. This will help you keep proper tension in your abdominals while you incline in a safe manner.
Breathe in as you descend. Don’t forget to support your head just as before. Don’t use your arms, and keep your chin off of your chest. You should breathe at a rate that will finish when you reach the floor.
If you still aren’t seeing results, you may have to reexamine your diet. Crunches only tone your abs, they won’t strip the fat off of them. With a proper diet, you can melt that fat away. Avoid fatty foods, get lots of protein, and moderate carbs.
Cardiovascular workouts are an important base for any exercise program and diet. Go running, walking, or swimming. This will make your exercises more effective, and help burn off fat.
Stomach crunches help to tone abs, but only when properly performed. Now, you should know what has been holding your abs back.
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