The CrossFit phenomenon is showing no signs of slowing down. More and more people turning to the regimen every day as a means to get strong and lean, and CrossFit in particular has some phenomenal exercises to carve out a six-pack that go beyond your average crunches.
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Here are three of the most transformative CrossFit moves to shred your abs.
Knees To Elbows Leg Lift
This exercise for more advanced CrossFitters is an effective method of ripping abdominal muscles and burning unwanted belly fat. A CrossFit “box” isn’t complete without a pull-up bar and neither should your home gym. The pull-up bar isn’t just for cranking out those pull-ups, it’s also useful for this awesome knee to elbow workout.
How to Do It: Grab the pull-up bar with both hands, with your palms facing away from you. Hang freely and raise both knees to your elbows (or as close as you can). Do as many of them as you can in a minute.
If you’re not ready for this exercise or you don’t have a pull-up bar at home, you can do the modified version: Stand upright with your arms stretched out to the sides. Fold your arms at your elbows with the palms facing outwards in a “surrender” gesture. While still in that pose, bring your right knee up as high as possible to touch your left elbow while remaining as upright as possible for as many reps as possible. Repeat on the other side.
The L-Sit Sit-Up
A highly effective abdominal cruncher, the L-sit was once a well-kept secret in the gymnastics community and the secret ingredient of gymnasts’ fantastic core stability. Now it’s a prominent feature of CrossFit workouts.
How to do it: You need a pair of parallel bars. Support your body entirely on your arms, holding yourself up between the parallel bars while bending your legs at the hips, so they’re stretched in front of you and your body forms an L shape. Hold the position as long as you can, ideally aiming for a minute. You’re your way up to longer stretches. World-class athletes can hold the posture for over three minutes.
The sit-up isn’t dead. It’s undergoing an evolution of sorts. Traditional sit-ups can cause lower back problems, but the modified butterfly sit-up is every bit as effective without causing back strain.
How to Do It: Sit on the ground with your feet facing each other and touching, as you would in yoga. Place your hands behind your head with your elbows flared out as wide as possible. Slowly lower your upper body toward the floor with your back tightened. At about an inch from the ground, pull yourself back to the starting position for one rep.