Crunches and sit-ups look alike. One might get confused as to which one is what and what it does. Crunches are essentially an exercise for the core. The core includes abdomen muscles, obliques, and lower back muscles as well. They are perfect to get your abdominal muscles in action. While sit-ups are somewhat like crunches, they work on abdomen endurance. It is endurance training for the abdomen to tighten, strengthen and tone the abdominal muscles primarily. Follow up-to know the difference between crunches and sit-ups and the different kinds of both the exercises.
What are Crunches?
Crunches help you build your core. By core, we mean abdomen, obliques, and lower back muscles. Crunches will help you get those abs. You can also try crunches for a better posture and balance.
How to do crunches:
- You start by lying down on your back.
- Lat with your legs folded at the knees and get comfortable to the ground.
- For your hands, put them across your shoulders, crossed up. Or you can place it behind your ears, gently touching the temples of your head. Make sure you don’t take the support from your hands or push your head. This might injure your neck.
- With the position being set, lift your back with head and shoulder blades up to the ground. As you rise, exhale.
- While going back down to the initial position, inhale.
Repeat the exercise in a set of 10 to 25 repetitions.
Benefits of Crunches:
Strengthen those abs:
Crunches can be a great way to get those six-pack abs that you’ve been aiming for.
Bolster your core muscles:
Crunches essentially focus on the core of an individual. As the person alleviates support from the feet and head, the tension shifts to the core, thereby strengthening it.
Clearly, getting up and down with all the tension built up at the core, you do lose some significant amount of calories.
No equipment required:
Crunches are perfect to build up your abs and obliques because they can be down literally anytime, anywhere. No special heavy equipment needs to do a set of crunches. Just lie down comfortably and begin with it.
What are sit-ups?
Sit-ups are eventually endurance exercises for working up your abdominal muscles. Sit-ups also take your chest muscles, hip flexors, lower backs, and neck muscles into consideration. Fat cells are not as activated as the muscles cells in Sit-ups. You can burn more calories as a result of regular sit-up exercise.
How to do sit-ups:
- Lie down on the back and bend your legs at the knees.
- Place feet firmly on the ground and stabilize the lower body comfortably.
- Again, for hands cross them across shoulders or place them behind respective ears.
- Now, here you have to curl up your body towards your knees.
- Slowly, lower down, and inhale as you go down.
Start off with 10 reps in the beginning.
Benefits of Sit-ups :
This is the biggest motivator that gets you up every time you lie down there doing a Sit-up.
Muscle mass enhanced:
Abdominal and hips muscle mass is improved as a result of regular sit-up exercise. Sit-up performance is a great indicator of muscle loss.
Enhance athletic performance:
Sit-ups are known to boost endurance and athletic spirit in an individual. As the muscle gets contracted and stretched, you feel the tension and that tends to be satisfying.
Get a good posture:
Sit-ups will get you a good posture if done properly regularly. Your hips, spine, and shoulders all align the right way to get you a good posture.
Sit-ups are also known to increase flexibility, They alleviate the stiffness in your spine and hips. Back and hips become more flexible as a result of doing sit-ups.
Let us now look at the different variations of both these exercises.
These are a great form to bolster your core strengths and tone the abdominal muscles. To attain the right position, start by lying down in the general position of crutches with legs folded t the knees. Now join your knees and turn them down on one side to the ground. Now bring one side up at a time and meet your knees on the opposite side.
Side crunches are effective for the internal as well external oblique muscles. For this one too, you bend your knees and put them on one side on the ground. Now get up to the opposite side. This is a great exercise to quickly get burning the calories off your obliques.
These crunches require heavy equipment in the gym. These can be done only in gyms where there is a cable for the purpose. Make sure you hold the cable with a tight grip and don’t let go of it till the end. Also, keep your back straight while doing the cable crunches. Abdominal muscles can help move the pulley cable.
Vertical leg crunches:
Another subtype of crunches is ventricle leg crunches. The name is pretty descriptive of this exercise. Here, you put your legs straight up together as you lie in the crutches position. With your legs straight up in the air, the intensity of an exercise is increased. Therefore, it gets you the extra lift that you need. It targets the abdominal muscles to a greater extent. Also, ventricle leg crunches will give you and a tightened core.
For this one, you do not lie down. Rather, you just stand with your legs shoulder-width apart. Put hands back behind your ears. Start off with lifting one leg and turning your head towards that leg. Then, the other leg and face turning that one again. This will focus on your legs, abdomen, and calves.
The most basic variation that one can out in any exercise is to out some without and make it difficult. Adding weight to regular crunches definitely gives a boost to the already-building process. Here, the exercise becomes more challenging and rewarding. Hold a dumbbell or plate, or a weighted ball to achieve this crunch variation.
Here, you crunch your abs while lying in a plank position. Get into the plank position, put your feet wide apart for more stability. Brace your core whilst crunching the belly, thereby pushing your palm into the ground. Now you bend one knee and withdraw it towards your chest. Get back to the lank position.
To achieve this, you require a vertical bench. You lie down on that bench and follow the basic sit up’s procedure.
As you lie down in the sit-up position, open your legs with feet joined in a diamond shape. Now, with your hands at the back of your ears, try to get to and reach your knees vertically.
Again, and some weight in the form of plate, ball, or dumbbells to dot the weighted sit-up variation of the regular sit-ups. Wright’s sit-ups work for your chest, back, and abdomen in a quicker and effective way than usual.
For butterfly sit-ups, you lie down with your legs in the diamond position. Now stretch your arms up straight in the air. Join hands and get up in this position and revert. Repeat it as many times as desired.
Roma chair sit-ups:
For this, you require a bench. Sit on a chair or bench such that the lower legs are fastened at a place. Place your hands on your chest, waist, or neck, wherever you feel comfortable. Now lower the body back until complete extension felt at the hips. Now get up to the initial position.
Takeaway: We discussed the differences between crunches and sit-ups, their benefits, and the different variables that you can try with each of these exercises. It is imperative to note that both exercises are independent and require determination and motivation. Get yourself up and do the sit-ups and crunches to strengthen your core and abdominal muscles.