How to do Crunches?

The area around the abdomen, hip, thighs and waist keeps accumulating fat due to the sedentary lifestyle these days. Fat reduction in this area is not an easy target to achieve. However if certain calisthenics exercises are followed this goal can be achieved at a quicker pace. Rectus abdominis area has to be given a proper work out through an exercise called crunches. It is vital that you understand the right method to do this exercise. To achieve abs of the washboard type understanding different exercise versions available is very necessary. What are crunches?

Type of Crunches Exercise

Some people may be of the opinion that belly fat cannot be easily fought by doing crunches. This is certainly right because they have not understood the right method of doing crunches. These are core exercises needing the right technique to perform. Reaping benefits of this exercise is possible, when proper steps are followed and the exercise is done properly.

  1. 1.       Full Vertical Crunches

Name of the exercise: Full Vertical Crunches

How it helps: Perfect abs for men and women

How to do the exercise: This is a perfect abdominal exercise for women and men. Both the upper and lower abdominal muscles are given a proper workout with this exercise. To start, lie down on the floor and in the air keep the legs extended. Behind your neck, place your hands and keep the fingers interlocked or interlaced. Now contract muscles on your abdomen and off the floor lift your shoulders slowly. Do not move when you have ensured that the legs have been extended perfectly well. With the body make a U position in the final position.  For a few seconds, keep holding to this position and then release this position, slowly.

Benefits of the exercise: Tones up lower and upper body

  1. 2.       Regular Crunches

Name of the exercise: Regular Crunches

How it helps: Flatter abs

How to do the exercise: This is a crunches exercise in its basic form. Start by lying down on an exercise mat, on your back. Now bend your knees and on the floor, place the feet firmly. Behind your head, interlace the fingers so as to provide proper support to the head. Now as you lift the shoulders off the floor, exhale. For a few seconds keep holding on to this position. Ensure that you do not rest. Push the neck forwards. It is the abdominal muscles that need the workout and not the neck muscles which need to be kept in mind. Per set this exercise can be repeated around 12 to 15 times. To perform this exercise, the crunches exercise ball can be best used. When the ball is used to do these exercises it is called ball crunches.

Benefits of the exercise: Gives the abdominal muscles a proper workout

  1. 3.       Reverse Crunches

Name of the exercise: Reverse Crunches

How it helps:  Strong and toned lower body

How to do the exercise: The lower region of the abdomen gets a proper exercise with the reverse crunches. Hence it is very essential to make it a part of regular exercise routine. Start by lying down on the floor and place the hands on the floor. Ensure that you do not tuck your the hands under the buttocks as the exercise pose does not have to be compromised in any way. Now off the floor lift the feet and towards the chest start bringing in the knees. Contract the abs slowly and off the floor start lifting up the hips. Try to lift the legs as if you want them to reach towards the sky at a ninety degree angle. Come back to starting position. Repeat the exercise.

Benefits of the exercise: Taut and stronger abs

  1. 4.       Oblique Crunches

Name of the exercise: Oblique Crunches

How it helps: Tones up lower body

How to do the exercise: Side crunch is another name for the oblique crunches. To start, lie down on your back on to the floor. Bend your knees and place them firmly on the floor. Behind the head, place your hands and keep the fingers interlaced as this helps in providing proper support to the head. Now start lifting the shoulders off the floor and twist towards the right in an effort to touch your left elbow with the right knee. Come back slowly to the starting position and on the other side, repeat the same as well.  At least 12 to 15 times this exercise needs to be repeated.

Benefits of the exercise: Removes love handles


Remember these when doing Crunches:

  • Effective Stability Ball Exercises

The stability ball proves to be very effective, if you desire to add more intensity into the crunches exercise. It is very necessary to ensure that the right position is maintained when you do the stability ball exercises. To avoid chances of any kind of injury it is best to take the help and guidance of a personal trainer. Before you do the crunches, don’t forget to do some exercises for warming up. Once the exercise routine is finished, it is equally important for you to let the body cool down as well.

  • Overall Weight Loss

Overall weight loss is assisted when you do crunches exercise. The abdominal muscles become taut and stronger. The good thing is that a good number of calories too are burned while doing crunches. Metabolism is given a proper boost indirectly and you benefit from direct burning of calories. At the muscle level the body breaks down, when crunches exercises are performed. Muscles may experience small tears which get repaired when the body is in the resting mode. Muscles get rebuilt with calories extracted from the body fat.

  • Calorie Reduction

As compared to before the muscles now turn out to be stronger and tighter. In the process overall weight also gets reduced. Significant variation is seen in calorie reduction when crunches exercises are done. At least fifty calories can be lost when a workout for ten minutes is done. This is a resistance exercise form. So even when you are resting, the body continues to burn out calories.