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Twist Crunch (Legs Up)

Twist Crunch (Legs Up)

The Twist Crunch (Legs Up) is a dynamic core exercise that targets the abdominals, obliques, and hip flexors. It is a variation of the traditional crunch and adds an extra challenge by incorporating a twisting motion. This exercise is great for toning and strengthening the abdominal muscles while also improving core stability and flexibility. To perform the Twist Crunch (Legs Up), start by lying flat on your back with your legs extended straight up towards the ceiling. Keep your arms stretched out to the sides, parallel to the floor, for stability. From this starting position, engage your core muscles and lift your upper body off the ground, simultaneously twisting your torso to bring your right elbow towards your left knee. As you twist, focus on contracting your abdominals and exhaling to further engage your core muscles. Lower your upper body back down to the starting position and then repeat the same motion, this time bringing your left elbow towards your right knee. This alternating twisting motion ensures that both sides of your abdominals get targeted effectively. It is important to maintain proper form throughout the exercise. Keep your lower back pressed into the ground, avoid straining your neck, and move in a controlled and fluid manner. Remember to breathe during the exertion phase of each movement to optimize your performance and enhance the mind-muscle connection. Incorporating the Twist Crunch (Legs Up) into your routine can help add variety to your core workouts and challenge your abdominal muscles in different ways. As with any exercise, it is important to progress gradually, listening to your body, and ensuring proper form to maximize the benefits and reduce the risk of injury.

Instructions

  • Lie down on your back on a yoga mat with your legs up in the air, knees slightly bent.
  • Place your hands behind your head, interlacing your fingers, or you can keep them crossed over your chest.
  • Exhale and lift your upper body off the mat, aiming to touch your right elbow to your left knee while simultaneously straightening your right leg.
  • Inhale and slowly lower your upper body back down to the starting position, but keep your legs raised.
  • Repeat the movement, this time aiming to touch your left elbow to your right knee while straightening your left leg.
  • Continue alternating sides until you have completed the desired number of repetitions.

Tips & Tricks

  • Engage your core muscles throughout the entire exercise for maximum effectiveness.
  • Focus on using your abdominal muscles to lift your upper body off the floor, rather than pulling with your neck or arms.
  • Keep your feet off the ground throughout the exercise to target the lower abdominal muscles.
  • Exhale as you lift your upper body off the ground and inhale as you lower back down to maintain proper breathing.
  • Avoid using momentum to swing your body during the exercise - instead, perform the movement in a controlled and slow manner.
  • If you feel strain on your neck, try placing your hands lightly behind your head for support.
  • For an added challenge, hold a lightweight dumbbell or a medicine ball at your chest while performing the exercise.
  • Ensure proper form by keeping your lower back pressed firmly against the floor throughout the entire movement.
  • To prevent muscle imbalances, be sure to incorporate exercises that target the opposing muscle groups, such as lower back exercises.
  • Include a variety of abdominal exercises in your workout routine to target all areas of your core.
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