Samara Donald is: The Gym Coach

Make the most of your workout!

Neck in a pinch? Try standing abs

Ab exercises are often done in ‘supine’ position (lying on your back), and require you to lift your chest toward your lower body. For super strong fitness gurus, this is done by contracting their (very strong) abs which support the back and neck. But for most average gym goers, this motion tends to put undue pressure on the neck (if you’re feeling ‘pinch’ you should not do abs this way).

An alternative for working the abs is to do them upright. You may find this an even more effective way to create that concave shape in the oblique and transverse abdominal muscles (those ones on the sides). Try this next time you’re in the gym (or even at home!).

Muscles worked: Internal & External oblique, Transverse Abdomonis*

Time to Complete: About 5 minutes

You will need: Just your body

1. Start by standing upright, shoulders back and standing tall.

2. Place your hands behind your head, elbows straight out creating a triangle shape

3. Contract your abs (this is the important part!) and slowly dip one elbow toward the floor.

4. When your forearm is exactly perpendicular to the floor, return to the standing position (contracting the obliques and moving slowly!).

Repeat this 10-12 times on one side, then 10-12 times on the opposite side. Rest 30 seconds and repeat.

Abs - Standing crunch (start)Abs - Standing crunch (end)

 

*want to learn more about your abs? You got more muscles than you thought: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abdominal_external_oblique_muscle

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This entry was posted on January 14, 2011 by in Abs and tagged , , .
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