Crunches

Lie on your back on an exercise mat with your feet firmly planted on the floor. Place your hands lightly behind your head so your thumbs are behind your ears. Elbows should be open and out to the side. Your chin should be up and off your chest. Take a deep breath and then exhale while using your abdominal muscles to lift your upper torso, until your shoulder blades are up off the floor. Hold for a moment at the top of the movement, and then in a slow and controlled manner lower yourself back to the floor.

Crunch Variations

Reverse Crunches

Lie on an exercise mat with your arms palm down at your sides. Your feet should be off the ground with your knees bent at 90 degrees. Slowly, flex your abs, press your back into the floor and lift your hips 2 to 4 inches off the floor. Hold at the top of this movement for several seconds and then very slowly return to your starting position. Repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Reverse Crunch with a Leg Lift

Lie on an exercise mat with you kettlebell a few inches above your head. Extend your arms and hold the kettlebell. Bend your knees to 90 degrees. Slowly flex your abs and press your back into the floor. Lift your hips about 2 to 4 inches off the floor. Hold att the top of the movement for a moment, continuing to hold the kettlebell. Then slowly lower your legs, aiming to have them parallel to the floor and just 1 to 2 inches off the floor. Slowly bring your knees back to 90 degrees and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Reverse Crunch, Leg Lift and a V

Lie on an exercise mat with you kettlebell a few inches above your head. Extend your arms and hold the kettlebell. Bend your knees to 90 degrees. Slowly flex your abs and press your back into the floor. Lift your hips about 2 to 4 inches off the floor. Hold att the top of the movement for a moment, continuing to hold the kettlebell. Then slowly lower your legs, aiming to have them parallel to the floor and just 1 to 2 inches off the floor.  When you reach the lowest point of the position, keeping your back pressed into the floor, open your legs into a v, as wide as you can.  Hold for a few seconds.  Then, close your legs, so they are again parallel to the floor and just 1 to 2 inches off the floor.  Slowly bring your knees back to 90 degrees and repeat for the desired number of repetitions.

Crunches with a Press

Lie on your back on an exercise mat with your feet firmly planted on the floor, holding the kettlebell by bell close to your chest. Take a deep breath and exhale, while using your abdominal muscles to lift your upper torso, until your shoulder blades are off the floor. At the top of this movement, press the kettlebell until your arms are straightened. Return the kettlebell to your chest and slowly return to your starting position. Repeat.

Connie Somerton About Connie Somerton

Connie Somerton is a Can-Fit-Pro certified personal training specialist and nutrition and wellness specialist with a passion for health and fitness. She has experience in personal training for individuals and for groups, and has almost 15 years of experience in strength, cardio, and flexibility training.