Just about anyone that joins a gym signs up with one goal in mind: to get abz.
While individual goals differ, the common one is to lose fat around the waist and “tone up.”
While you can’t just zap away stomach fat with the wave of a wand, you can drop body fat overall with sound training and diet. Losing body fat will get you closer to revealing those abs.
Incorporating some ab and core training into your routine can be great for performance and aesthetics.
This doesn’t mean you have to wiggle around on a mat doing hundreds of reps in order to develop strong and functional abs.
Without the proper diet, you won’t be able to reveal all of your hard work.
However, losing body fat and making sure you train your midsection will help you attain a lean stomach.
A phenomenal exercise to start incorporating right now is the reverse crunch.
The reverse crunch primarily targets the rectus abdominus and obliques, but engages all of the musculature of the core.
Why You Need to be Doing Reverse Crunches
Because they’re awesome.
Reverse crunches are great for those that live in extension all day long.
This exercise forces you to posteriorly tilt the hips, which helps to engage the external obliques.
They can be a great addition to your programming to help build core strength.
Reverse Crunch Tutorial
How to Perform the Reverse Crunch
1) Lie on your back with a weighted implement about 2-3 inches from your head.
2) Ensure your low back is flat against the floor before every rep.
3) Knees should be right over the hips, feet tucked towards your butt, and rib cage pulled down towards belly button.
4) Using the weight of the kettlebell (or whatever you’re using for a counterbalance) pick up your hips in an arc fashion all the way to your elbows. Be sure not to simply roll your knees towards your elbows as this won’t really engage the core.
5) Control your hips back down to the floor, trying to keep space between your knees and chest the entire time.
Frequency– 1-3 times a week, I prefer on upper body lifting days simply because the low back tends to get used a lot more on lower body days.
Difficulty– start with a heavier implement and progress by lowering the weight of your counterbalance over time. These should be fairly challenging.
Rep Range– I like to do these in the 8-10 rep range. Always be sure to choose quality of reps over quantity of reps.
Where to place in your workout– Usually these are performed for 3-4 sets towards the end of a workout, so that your abs aren’t fatigued for prior exercises. If you need help setting up a program be sure to check out my online coaching page.
It’s Too Easy, What’s Next
Progressing the reverse crunch is actually pretty simple. Without switching exercises, you can add a challenge with several options.
1) Use less weight on your counterbalance
Just simply using a lighter weight can add a ton of difficulty to this exericse. You can go so far as to using no counterbalance and only holding your arms back behind your head.
2) Add a heel tap
As seen in the video, adding a heel tap can add a challenge as well. Be sure to keep your ribs down and the lower back pressed flat against the floor as you move your heels further away from your butt. Start with a closer heel tap and slowly try to increase the distance you are tapping every few workouts. This will really force you to control your pelvis and stabilize your spine during the movement.
Did You Find this Tutorial Helpful?
If so, be sure to share these tips with your gym buddies so they too can benefit from proper execution of the reverse crunch.
Intelligent core work is just one piece of the puzzle to revealing your abs.
Nutrition is a major component to fat loss as well.
If you haven’t read it, I highly suggest grabbing a copy of my fat loss ebook so you can understand the steps needed to lose body fat.
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