Archive for the tag - crunches

7 Tips for Better Crunches!

perfect six pack2Crunches are the staple of most ab workouts, but they’re rarely executed to their full potential. To really make make your crunches count, here are 7 tips:

  1. Keep your head and neck in alignment with your spin to avoid strain and discomfort. This means that there should always be space between your chin and your upper chest. A simple trick is to pretend you’re holding an apple under your chin… don’t crush it!
  2. Resist gravity. Crunching up is important, but most people forget about the lowering portion of the exercise. By resisting gravity as your shoulders lower back to the floor, you’ll get more punch out of each crunch.
  3. Use mind-muscle control. Mind-muscle control refers to the feeling of connection between your mind and the muscles that are being worked. By mentally focusing on your abdominal muscles while performing a crunch, you can can greatly increase the level of intensity.
  4. Avoid interlocking fingers behind your head. Interlocking fingers is more likely to result in your head being pulled forward (remember to keep that apple under your chin!). Instead, place your fingers by your ears or cross arms over your chest.
  5. Magnify your crunch with modifications. If you want to take your crunches to the next level, try elevating your heels so that they’re a foot off of the floor – essentially bringing your legs into tabletop position. Alternatively, try reaching your arms straight up, as though your palms were reaching through the ceiling.
  6. Don’t anchor your feet. Forget what you learned in elementary school. Anchoring your feet under something heavy shifts the focus from your abs to your hips. It’s also more likely to cause strain by overextending and/or arching your back.
  7. Breathe. Don’t hold your breath! Instead, incorporate rhythmic breathing into your ab work. Exhale on the way up and inhale on the way down.

If you’re looking to spice up your ab workout, then check out my Davey Wavey Six Pack Program. You’ll get five, 12-minute ab workouts to perform each day of the workweek and a slew of great materials. And use discount code “blog” to save 25% during checkout.

Enjoy!

Best Time to Do Abs in a Workout?

The best time to train your abs is at the end of a workout.

Here’s a question that I get a lot: Is there a best time to train your abs in a workout?

The answer is yes.

First, consider that your abs work constantly – even when you’re engaging other muscles. Your abs fire while doing everything from squats to sprints to shoulder presses and so on. The core works to keep you stabilized and properly supported. Even when walking down the street, you’re using your abs.

Because your abdominal muscles are so important and because they assist in so many movements, it’s best to train your abs the end of your workout session.

If you train your abs at the start of your workout, on the other hand, they could become fatigued – and subsequent exercises may suffer. If your abs can’t assist in a dead lift, for example, you may be unable to lift as much weight. Or, even worse, your form may become compromised and injury could result. In situations like these, fatigued ab muscles can become a limiting factor for non-ab exercises – thereby hampering progress and results.

The bottom line: Save crunches, sit-ups and the like for the end of your workout session. Doing this ensures best results on non-abdominal exercises that require core support.

5 Tips: Eliminate Neck Pain During Crunches.

Hey Davey,

Whenever I do crunches, I experience neck pain. What am I doing wrong?

Lots of love,
Collin

Hey Collin,

Crunches are a popular and effective exercise to increase abdominal strength. But when performed with compromised form, crunches can easily lead to neck pain and discomfort.

Here are some tips to maintain good form:

  • Maintain a fist-sized space between your neck and chest. This will decrease strain on the semispinalis and multifidi neck muscles.
  • Don’t tense your neck; keep neck muscles relaxed while crunching.
  • Remember: The lifting motion is done by elevating your shoulder blades off of the floor rather than straining your neck forward.
  • If your arms are behind your head, do not pull on your head. To prevent this, fold your arms across your chest.
  • Stretch your neck muscles! It well help keep them relaxed.

If neck pain persists, then you’ll want to contact a medical professional for attention. And remember, as I shared in a recent YouTube video, it takes more than crunches to create a six pack!

Happy crunching!

Love,
Davey

INSANE Abs in 5 Minutes! [video]

Want a crazy insane ab workout that takes just 5 minutes?

I pushed my limits and recorded this 5 minute ab workout to leave you sore and sweaty. All you’ll need is a yoga mat or towel – and, of course, five minutes.

The full, 30-minute ab workout is available as part of my Total Body Assault fitness program.

Enjoy!