Crunches can help you develop a six-pack.
If you are having trouble building your abdominal strength, your exercise routine maybe lacking abdominal weight training. After a prolonged period of working your abdominals with crunches, your body weight will no longer suffice to boost muscle growth, and that's where weight training comes in. Weights help rev up the intensity of your crunches, which gives your abs the challenge they need to grow stronger.1.
Carry a 10-kg weight plate with both hands. Pick a larger weight plate if the resistance is not enough and a lighter one if it is too heavy.2.
Lie on your back while holding the weight plate with both hands to your chest on an exercise bench. Keep your face up, and bend your knees and hips on the bench with your head hanging off the bench.3.
Lift the weight from your chest and hold it behind your neck with both hands. Alternatively, have a gym buddy pass you the weight plate when you are lying on the exercise bench.4.
Tense your waist muscles and lift your upper torso from the bench. Keep your lower back on the bench and lift only your upper back. Raise your torso as high as you can from the bench while maintaining good form and return until your upper back contacts the exercise bench.5.
Perform 10 repetitions in two to three sets. Rest for 60 seconds between sets to give your abs ample time to recover.
- Weight plate
- Exercise bench
- To exercise your rectus abdominis as well as your psoas major muscles in the abdomen, try weighted twisting crunches. While on the bench with the weight plate behind your neck, raise your upper torso and twist your waist to either side. Alternate your crunches by twisting to your left and right side with each repetition.
- Warm up for five to 10 minutes before exercising your abdomen. Jog lightly on a treadmill, raising your heart to about 40 to 60 percent of your maximum heart rate. For an estimated maximum heart rate, use the formula of 220 minus your age.
- Stop exercising your abdomen if you experience stomach cramps or muscle pain.