If you’re looking to mix up your strength-training routine, it’s time to try these effective variations on the basic crunch. Challenge your core with these fresh exercises that will help you feel more confident and work more than your upper abs alone.
DUMBBELL SIDE BEND
Bend sideways to the right, squeezing your waist on the right side. Keep your neck as neutral as possible, looking forward not down.
Pull the left ribs down to return to standing upright.This focuses the work on the left obliques.
Repeat for a total of 12 bends to the right, then switch sides. Do three sets.
Exhale to engage the abs as you kick your right leg up, bringing your left hand to your right toes, doing a small crunch.
Repeat on the other side.
This counts as one rep.
Repeat for 12 reps x3.
Hold one weight in hands at a slight angle above shoulder.
Point foot to side. Pull right knee up to meet right elbow. That’s one standing crunch.
Do 10 reps. Switch sides and repeat. Keep movements controlled. Do 3 sets.
STANDING CORE STABILIZER
Moving your torso slightly, slowly rotate your arms to the left as far as you can.
Pause, then rotate to the right. That’s one rep. Continue for a total of 10 reps.
REVERSE DUMBBELL CHOP
Keeping your arms straight, swing the weight above your right shoulder as you straighten your legs.
Reverse the movement to return to start. That’s one rep. Do 10, then switch sides and repeat.
SHOULDER PRESS SIDE CRUNCH
As you bend your elbows to lower the weights, lift your left knee up toward your left elbow. Squeeze your abs to exaggerate the side crunch.
Lower your leg while raising the weights overhead, and repeat the side crunch on the right. This completes one rep.
Do 15 reps, alternating sides.
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