View Full Version : How do you do sit ups properly?
06-01-2009, 12:46 PM
I dont know if im doing them properly or not?.
Ive started doing them regularly and have been for about 2 months now. I have my knee's bent, and dont go up all the way (which i thought was the correct way).
Sometimes tho i end up with back ache afterwards, i dont mean the kind as in i cannot walk properly, and i often put my hand on my back in discomfort, i mean the less severe kind, where you can feel its been a bit over worked, and its quite a nagging sensation. Its gone by the next day, or after 3-4 hours, but is this normal?, or should your back always feels as fresh as a daisy?.
Do you keep your back as straight as you can when going up and down, or is curving it a bit, ok?.
07-01-2009, 10:51 AM
Are you are talking about crunches pal where your lower back stays in contact with the floor and your head and shoulders are raised ?
If your back is aching from these then you need to strengthen your lower back as there shouldn't be much if not any strain on it when doing crunches. Of course with any abdominal work you should be working the erectors anyway to prevent muscle imbalance so make sure you're doing some hyerextensions, good mornings or whatever.
07-01-2009, 11:01 AM
there is no correct way to do sit ups, it all depends on what your interpretation of a sit up is!!
For yourr info though:-
(with knees bent)
Approx first 30 degrees of trunk flexion comes from Rec-abs,
After that Illiopsoas and other hip flexors take over the majority of the movement.
17-01-2009, 08:07 PM
I dont think its crunches i am talking about, as my lower back does leave the floor.
whats the best exercise then to strengthen your lower back?, wont your lower back gradually toughen during the sit ups alone?.
As far as i know, when you do most weight training maneuvers, usually more than one muscle gets worked out. What primarily gets worked out, and what secondary gets worked out (im sure thats not proper grammar there? :confused: ) . For example, when you do bench pressing, its your pecs that primarily gets worked out, but......sometimes your triceps or front deltoids come into it a bit, which then is the secondary muscles that get worked out from it. Is your lower back the secondary muscle that gets worked out from a sit up?
30 degrees doesnt like a very high elevation, so shouldent i go up that much then?
Your "back" won't get a workout from doing sit ups, as the muscles you're talking about directly oppose those doing the sit up.
Back pain and abdominal/back training is a whole article in itself though, I'll leave it to someone with more time on their hands :)
17-01-2009, 08:38 PM
I, personally, don't do "full" sit ups as I have had spinal damage as a result of an accident years ago, but even if I could, from what I've read I wouldn't do sit ups anyhow. I'd stick to Crunches on a physio ball, back extensions (hyperextensions) and leg raises
23-01-2009, 05:15 PM
Well, from reading everybody's posts since i made this thread, i decided to give crunches a go instead, like someone suggested. But i wasent sure what crunches were exactly, so i had a brain wave and decided to type in "crunches" on youtube. I find this video here
And decided to do them that way.
I might of found myself a better alternative. Cause a few days ago, i did 4 sets of crunches (like how they were done in that video) and my back felt fine afterwards :D , so im gonna stick with those for now
23-01-2009, 10:01 PM
dont stick with just crunches for working your core though, its a far more complex system than just the abs you see on the front. Don't neglect working your lower back, obliques and rotational strength
24-01-2009, 02:24 PM
To work your abs your spine/vertabrae need to flex/bend. This will make your abs contract ie. you should feel them go shorter and fatter in turn this should have the opposite effect on the muscles in your back as these should stretch.
The only way to coach someone in achieving a correct abdominal workout by writing advice on a forum is when you are performing a situp or crunch exercise you should imagine you are trying to put your chin on your belly button, you will never get there but as you push yourself to get there this will achieve good flexion of the spine.
Working the abs is one of the only exercises where it is imposible to keep a straight back. Technically speaking though it is impossible to keep a straight back anyway as there is a natural curve in the spine!
As stapes 360 wrote most people perform what they think is a sit up they actually keep a straight back and work body parts which were not part of their initial goals.
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