Basic Sit Ups
Check out why basic sit ups are probably the most often performed abdominal exercise. Sit ups are appropriate for all levels to help develop their abs - but they must be done correctly.
The simple key to improve abdominal strength is the speed that you perform the movement.
If you work to fast than your not working your abdominal muscles, your simple increasing the risk of injury to your lower back - work slow and they will grow!
Its worth remembering, that your abdominal muscles will also be worked to help stablise your body for certain movements such as standing biceps curls, so for this reason, your best to perform any abdominal exercises at the end of your workout routine.
To perform Sit-Ups:
Start on your back, feet on the floor, knees bent.
Place your fingers to the side of your head, elbows out to the side. Your hands will thus support the weight of your head, not pull you up.
Look straight ahead, keeping your chin up off your chest. This will help to keep your neck in a relaxed, neutral position.
Inhale, and slowly lift your shoulders, neck and head. Your elbows should stay out to the side, your neck relaxed. Your lower back should stay in contact with the floor throughout the movement.
With your abs contracted, lift until you are about 30 degrees off the floor, hold for a second, then exhale and slowly return to the starting position.
- Pause once more, then repeat. The key to this exercise is smooth, slow movements, feeling the contraction in your abs the whole time.
Beginners should aim for two sets of 8 - 12 reps;
Intermediates two sets of 15 - 20 reps;
Advanced should do three sets of 20+ reps. Rest for 20 seconds between sets.
For a challenging workout, why not try one of our sample ABS WORKOUT