The basic sit-up exercise is a strength training exercise for the abdominal area, the hip flexors and the abdominal muscles. Executing the perfect sit-up is important to avoid injury when performing the movement.
The Perfect Sit-up Steps
Ensure you have have warmed up properly before performing any exercise!
- To start the sit-up you need to lay flat on your back with your knees bent and your feet securely placed on the floor. Your feet should ideally be placed inline with your hips.
- Your hands can either be placed behind the head to provide support or across your chest, crossing at the front. It is important to not pull on the back of your head when executing the movement, your hands are there to provide support only!
- Make sure to keep your chin off your chest. This will keep your neck properly aligned and help focus the work onto the abdominal muscles. Look straight ahead during the exercise.
- Inhale whilst slowly lifting your head, neck and shoulders off the floor, contracting your abdominal muscles fully. Your elbows should be pointing out to the side and your neck relaxed.
- When you reach the top of the movement you should hold it for a second and then exhale returning your head, neck and shoulders slowly to the starting position. A one second pause at the bottom part of the movement and then you repeat to the desired number of repitions.
Beginners should aim for 2 to 3 sets of 10 to 12 repititions. As you progress you can increase the number of sets or number of repetitions accordingly to keep the exercise intense.
I also reccomend watching the video below for slight variations of the sit-up technique.