Forget Crunches for a Trim Tummy
Is having a trim tummy part of the plan in your New Year’s Resolution? If you are at the gym performing sit up after sit up, and still not seeing the results you’re after, try a different exercise. Learn from our panel of experts why the traditional sit up is not the most effective way to a trim tummy. Forget doing crunches and try using one or more of the following exercises into your core strengthening routine.
To effectively work the core it is essential to keep in mind that the front, back and side body must be worked evenly. Doing traditional crunches without adding back extensions will result in strong, yet overly tights abs, and weak, overly stretched back muscles.
Forget the old crunch – they make strong hip flexors not strong abs. The ultimate core strengthening exercises are planks. Planks work the transverse abs which include pelvic girdle and lower back. The basic plank which is on elbows can be modified to suit all fitness levels.
Level 1 – in a box position.
Level 2 – on knees with a dropped pelvis.
Level 3 – legs out on toes.
Hold for about 20 seconds x 3. If you have any lower back pain drop down a level or take a break. Gradually build your holding times.
That is the basic plank but there are lots of other plank workouts including: side, reverse, upright, using weights and combining all variations which can be done on the wall, floor, fitness balls and benches.
What is your favorite core exercise?