The sit-up is an exercise for the abdominal muscles, and it begins by lying flat on the floor and ends when your back is fully lifted. Typically, you set your knees in a bent position. It is similar to the popular crunch with the exception that the sit-up, with its full range of motion, works a larger set of abdominal muscles. It is often utilized as a standard in general physical preparedness tests such as the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT).
Benefits of the Sit-up
- Improved core strength
- Increases athletic performance
- Improves balance and stability
- Reduces the risk of back pain and injury
- Improved posture and flexibility
- No need for equipment
- Can be performed almost anywhere
Movement Standards for the Sit-up
- Lie flat on the floor with your knees bent at the knees.
- Clasp your fingers behind your head or fold your arms across your chest
- Elevate your upper body until your elbows touch knees or thighs
- Under full control, lower yourself back to the starting position
- Repeat for the recommended number of repetitions.
- Maintain proper form to reduce the risk of back and neck injury
- Stay under control when lowering to the floor to minimize the impact.
- Sit-ups will not cause abdominal fat reduction. To achieve a “six-pack”, you most reduce body fat, which can only be accomplished across the entire body, as well as increasing muscle size (muscle hypertrophy)
Variations of Sit-ups
- Weighted Sit-up
- Bicycle Crunch
- Side Crunch
- Frog Crunch
- Russian Twist
- Dead Bugs
- Raised Leg Crunch
- Alternating Toe Touches
Progressions for Sit-ups
- Partial Sit-up (curl off the floor as high as possible)
- Place your hands along your side instead of behind head or across your chest
- Utilize a partner or a weight to hold down the feet
- Utilize a Bosu ball
- Knee raises while sitting on a bench or a chair.