How to: Do Abdominal Crunches

Name:  Abdominal Crunches.
Also known as:  Ab crunches, crunches.
Main muscles used:  Stomach.
Other muscles used:
Top tips:

  • Lay with your back and feet flat on the floor.
  • Keep your eyes looking straight up to the ceiling, and your chin up at all times.
  • Think of pressing your lower back into the floor, while tilting your ribcage and shoulders up a few inches.
  • Your spine needs to flex/bend upwards.

Common mistakes:

  • Pressing your chin onto your chest and whipping your head, as you come up.
  • Lifting your lower back off the floor.
  • Keeping your shoulders/ribcage touching the floor, and only “nodding” your head back and forth.


This is only a small move, and the idea is to restrict that movement to your spine and ribcage.  Nothing else should move, not your hips, knees, feet, neck. In the animation above, the hands are placed on the floor next to the hips.  You can think of this as “Stage 1”.  To make the exercise harder, gradually move the arms further up the body, towards (and even beyond) the head. But don’t be macho and try to do a harder version, only to let your form collapse.  It is much better to do easier ones right, than hard ones wrong.