Fitness: Better Arm Position for Abdominal Crunches

Fitness: Better Arm Position for
Abdominal Crunches

Dick Moss, Editor

There are several arm positions your students may use while performing abdominal crunches.

Some will link their hands behind their head. This position supports their head, but usually results in them pulling with the hands to assist in lifting their shoulders off the floor. This pulls the head forward of the neutral position, applies sudden pressure to the cervical disks and can cause injury to the neck.

Other positions, such as placing the hands beside the head or crossed on the chest, eliminate this problem, but provide no support for the head—a problem for students with weak neck muscles.

An alternate arm position can solve both problems.

Alternate Arm Position
Instruct your students to cross the arms behind their head so their hands touch the opposite shoulder blade. This provides a solid platform that supports the neck, but makes it difficult to pull the head forward.

Also, have them focus their eyes on a spot  on the ceiling or up in the sky, as a cue for keeping their head in a neutral position.

This arm position also places more mass near the head, forcing the abdominals to lift additional weight.

  Reference: Dick Moss, Editor, PE Update.cm

 
Students Who Perform Crunches With  Hands Behind their Head Often Pull Their Head Forward
Students Who Perform Crunches With Hands Behind their Head Often Pull Their Head Forward
   
Placing the Hands on the Opposite 
Shoulder Blade can Solve This Problem
Placing the Hands on the Opposite Shoulder Blade can Solve This Problem



To download the pdf version of this
article, click here: Download Now



© 2013, Physical Education Update.com, www.peUpdate.com

Bookmark and Share

Printer-Friendly Format