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Other examples of muscular endurance exercises are body-weight squats and pushups.
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A strong core is essential for regular coordinated movement. Your abdominal muscles support your spine and provide stabilization, allowing you to sit up straight, stand and walk upright. There are a multitude of different exercises that focus on training the core, with situps being one of the most popular. This particular exercise focuses on creating gains in muscular endurance.
Sit ups build endurance in your ab muscles.
Understand Endurance vs. Strength
Muscular endurance is the ability of your muscles to lift weight or contract against resistance for an extended period of time. Muscular strength is a measure of the force generated by your muscle against resistance. Situps train your abdominal muscles by lifting the weight of your upper body repeatedly. Strengthening exercises focus more on hypertrophy, or growth, of the muscle fibers and therefore use a much greater weight with fewer repetitions. Exercises for muscular endurance should be completed in two to three sets with 10 to 20 repetitions. Exercises for muscular strength should be completed in one set with up to eight repetitions.
Determine Fiber Types
Your muscles are made of two different types of fibers: slow twitch and fast twitch. Slow twitch muscle fibers are most closely associated with activities requiring muscular endurance, for example, distance running. Slow twitch muscle fibers have access to a much greater amount of blood capillaries than fast twitch fibers and contain high levels of oxygen-binding proteins. These characteristics make slow twitch muscle fibers more fatigue resistant. Fast twitch muscle fibers are needed for activities that require a great amount of power over a short period of time, such as sprinting. These muscle fibers have minimal access to blood capillary supply and oxygen binding proteins.
Measure Muscle Endurance
Measuring muscular endurance is slightly more involved than measuring for muscular strength. While muscular strength can be measured by the amount of your one-repetition maximum, muscular endurance is measured by your ability to complete numerous repetitions within a set period of time. The muscular endurance of your abdominal muscles would be measured by counting the number of situps you are able to complete within a 60-second window. A higher number of repetitions corresponds to greater levels of muscular endurance.
Combine the Two
Fully isolating muscular endurance from muscular strength is impossible. A certain degree of muscular strength is needed to be able to perform a situp. In a situation where you could only complete three situps, you would first build muscular strength by continuing to try to perform a situp. Muscular endurance training would begin once you could complete more than 10 repetitions.