In recent years many so-called industry experts have been fear mongering in regards to sit ups, stating things like it is an ineffective workout and can also injure the necks and backs of deconditioned individuals.
Of course anything can be potentially dangerous if done incorrectly, but we should never let fear get in the way of achieving our goals fitness or otherwise and actually focus on doing the moves correctly and safely.
Sit ups use the entire abdominal region and encourage the full body tension, they also force you to self stabilize, sit up variations provide one hell of an abs workout, these sit up variations will give you a great workout and are worth having in your arsenal.
You don’t have to use weights to get in the best shape of your life but adding weight to a sit up is a great way to ramp up this classic move. You can use anything such as a ball, rock or brick, anything that classes as heavy.
Start in a sit up position with the object in your hands, it can also be helpful to secure your feet under something like a bench or partner as this will be extra challenging to your body.Be sure to keep tension throughout and contract your abs coming to the top of a sit up position then return to the bottom with full control, this is one rep.
If you want to increase the demand on your muscles then hold the weight over your head as this will be more of a challenge than your chest, lengthening your body increases yield.
These start out like a weighted sit up, however your lower body will be used to make a flat platform to put you at a slight disadvantage, the shelf sit ups also demand more balance and intramuscular communication.
Start in a standard sit up position and pick your feet up, keep your shins parallel to the floor. You should now have a 90 degree bend at your hips and knees. Hold a weighted object such as a medicine ball and perform a sit up.
At the top place the weight on your shins, return to the bottom, come back and retrieve the weight, go slow as each rep counts as a double.
A great alteration to the traditional decline sit up, simply use a partner to add more explosiveness to the workout. Have your partner stand 3 to 8 feet away from you, start a sit up and as you get near the top throw the ball to your partner who will catch it and throw it back to you.
The great thing here is that you can ramp up the intensity without increasing the ball’s weight, simply get your partner to throw the ball harder, the impact shock will make your abs respond greater so they can absorb it.
As with a weighted sit up the higher you hold the ball to your head, the more of a mechanical disadvantage you put yourself in, this will increase the difficulty of the movement.
I first came across this exercise years ago but back then I barely had the power to raise my feet off of the ground, this is now one of my favorite ab workouts as it does all the abdominals without any equipment.
To do one, lie on the ground with hands over your head and your arms and legs fully extended. Do not lock your knees as this will send tension from your abs to your legs.
Making sure it is controlled, bring your arms and legs together whilst doing a sit up, a fully lengthened body will work out the best six packs.
Three great things that make the Rocky sit up hard:
The best part is it can be performed on a range of surfaces from a park bench to a jungle gym.
In a world of gimmicks and daft claims, going back to the old school basics can be a welcome breath of fresh air, people nearly always confuse complicated with better. The original sit up has been around long before the novelty machines came into being and isn’t going anywhere fast.
You can progress the sit up in many ways, some will give you serious gains.
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