Crunch That.

September 19th, 2011 by Amy Gonsalves Leave a reply »

Over the past few years, I’ve stopped doing the 10 minutes of abdominal work at the end of every bootcamp hour that I was taught to lead when I started years ago.  Here’s why:

crunches don’t get you much.

Core strength is important, of course. But you’ll strengthen your core anyway when you are doing other exercises with proper form!

(I think everybody loves crunches during bootcamp since that’s a time I’ll let them lie on their backs!)

I’m pasting in a portion of a discussion below, taken from a continuing education provider that has given me loads of great information.  The article points to several studies that
were published in the New York Times last monthIt’s worth a gander if you care about your core strength!

Are Crunches Worth the Effort?

When researches at Indiana State University began research on strength of core muscles vs athletic performance, the results were not what they expected. The thinking was that those with sturdy cores would perform better on physical performance tests. However, the results showed otherwise. But don’t give up on those core exercises yet.

While Indiana States results were not expected, other studies have shown novice runners do benefit from stronger cores. Those with better core strength were able to
reduce their 5K running time.

While studies vary across the spectrum on whether strong cores help with performance, what is known is if you train for your sport, the core strength will come. So what
does this mean for us? Avoid performing dozens of crunches. In fact, 6-8 good quality crunches a few times per week are best. Perform them correctly by maintaining the natural curve of the spine and lift only enough to feel the first bit of contraction. And remember, we all have a “6-pack,” but some of us need to reduce the body fat.

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1 comment

  1. Peggy says:

    1. We do like the lying down part of bootcamp. A lot.
    2. “Those with better core strength were able to
    reduce their 5K running time.” Those core muscles are holding down breakfast!

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