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Bicycle crunch

The bicycle crunch is an excellent exercise for building core strength and toning your thighs. It’s an easy move to complete, and when you feel that burn you’ll know you’re doing it right!

Lie flat on your back on the floor or mat with bent knees, feet placed firmly on the floor and your hands behind your head. Engage your abdominal muscles to stabilize your spine. Pull the shoulder blades back and down. Slowly lift both feet off the floor until your thighs are vertical to the floor (90-degree angle at the hips) and your knees are at a 90-degree bend. Your feet may be relaxed with toes pointing away from your body.

Gently exhale and begin your movement by simultaneously:

  1. Contracting the abdominals to curl your head and shoulders off the mat.
  2. Straightening one leg toward the wall in front of you while keeping it elevated off the floor, higher than your hip.
  3. Bringing your other knee close to your chest.
  4. Rotating your torso slowly to bring your opposite elbow toward your bend knee.

Repeat the movement to the opposite side. Complete a set of quality reps until your movement quality (technique) declines.


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Assisted Sit Ups With Resistance Bands

Do you need help with your sit-ups? Assist your abs with resistance bands.

Anchor the band at the bottom of the door. Grip the handles, or the band itself, and lie on your back, with your feet 3 to 4 feet away from the door. Your feet should be flat on the floor and knees bent. Also bend your arms, with your hands together, above your hips.

Start with your shoulder blades a couple of inches off the floor.

Exhale and contract your abs, raising your upper body until it´s perpendicular to the floor while keeping your head and back aligned.

Inhale and return to the starting position. Repeat.


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Scissors Abs

Lie flat on your back. Extend your arms so they’re against the sides of your body with your palms pressing into the floor, or bend your elbows and place your palms under your butt.

Lift both legs toward the ceiling, engaging your abs and pressing your lower back into the ground.

Keeping your core strong, slowly lower your right leg down toward the ground until it is a few inches above. Then slowly scissor your legs, lifting your right leg back up as you lower your left leg down toward the ground.

 


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Resistance band bicycle crunch

The bicycle crunch is an excellent exercise for building core strength and toning your thighs. It’s an easy move to complete, and you can make it tougher adding a resistance band to the equation.

Anchor the band at the bottom of the door. Attach each end of the band to an ankle strap, and lie on your back. Move far enough away from the door so that the band starts to stretch. Place your hands behind your head.

Gently exhale and begin your movement by simultaneously:

Contracting the abdominals to curl your head and shoulders off the mat.

Bringing your right knee in toward your right armpit and allowing the knee to bend to a deeper angle.

Straightening your left leg toward the door while keeping it elevated off the floor, higher than your hip.

Rotating your torso slowly to bring your left elbow toward your right knee. This movement will press your low back into the floor / mat.

Continue moving until your elbow touches or comes close to touching the opposite knee. Hold this up-position briefly for 1 – 2 seconds then inhale as you slowly return to your starting position and repeat the movement to the opposite side.


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Medicine ball alternating V-ups

The medicine ball alternating V-up is an advanced version of the traditional V-up exercise that targets the external obliques and helps to increase the range of motion throughout your hips and lower back. The additional weight will add strength and stability gains throughout the shoulder complex.

Lie flat on your back with your arms straight behind your head holding a medicine ball with your legs extended.

As you exhale, simultaneously lift one leg and torso off of the floor, bringing your arms forward until the ball touches your toe. Inhale and reverse the movement to return to the starting position. Repeat alternating legs.


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