How To Do The Standing Oblique Crunch Properly

The standing oblique crunch is an upright variation of the regular sit-up. It is an effective, results-oriented workout that primarily targets the oblique muscle and is performed when standing.

This calisthenics workout requires no equipment and can easily be included in your workout routine. The standing oblique crunch works the whole body and activates both the upper and lower body muscles as well as the core and is ideal for fitness enthusiasts and athletes whose goal is to sculpt and tone the core.

Choose the appropriate number of sets and reps to perform depending on your fitness levels.

Also known as: Side Crunches

Targeted Muscles: Abs

Required Equipment: Dumbbell/Cable Machine/Kettlebell/ Barbell

Exercise Type: Hypertrophy, Calisthenics

Exercise Mechanics: Compound

Force Type: Pull

Difficulty Level: Intermediate

STEPS:

  • Assume a hip-width stance
  • Pick a barbell plate using your right hand and hold it firmly to your right side.
  • Brace your core muscles, arch your back and push your chest outwards. Bend your knees slightly.
  • Put your left and on your hip and bend towards your left side. Hold when you feel a stretch o your right oblique. Hold this position for a few seconds.
  • Resume the starting position, reset, then arch your waist towards your right. When you’ve completed the recommended reps, work the opposite side and repeat.
  • Perform the same sets of reps for both sides to train your obliques equally.

FORM AND TECHNIQUE

Standing oblique is an easy and strict workout. Form is key. Ensure you only bend at your waist, and the motion does not recruit your hips.

TIPS:

  • Maintain a straight back and keep your gaze forward throughout the workout.
  • Pause for a few seconds in the middle of the rep to add intensity.
  • Perform the workout in a slow and controlled motion to train your obliques to their full potential.
  • Do not over lift- instead, focus on perfecting your technique and feel your muscles work.
  • Avoid swinging your hips and bending your spine frontwards.
  • Breathe out while crunching, and breathe in as you lower your legs to resume the starting position.

MUSCLES WORKED BY THE STANDING OBLIQUE CRUNCH

The standing oblique crunch is an active workout that trains many muscle groups simultaneously.

ABDOMINAL MUSCLES

The abdominal muscles are located in the midsection and are responsible for the strength and stability needed to perform this workout.

CORE MUSCLES

The standing oblique crunch engages the core muscles, consisting of a series of stabilizer muscles located at the abdomen, back, shoulders, and neck.

GLUTES

When performed with the correct technique, the standing oblique crunch activates the gluteus muscles, that aid the balance and posture as you perform the exercise.

BENEFITS OF THE STANDING OBLIQUE CRUNCH

The standing oblique crunch provides many fitness and health benefits to your body, including:

STRENGTHENS YOUR ABDOMINALS

The standing oblique crunch primarily targets the oblique and transverse abdominus. This workout recruits the abdominal muscles and braces the core for the strength needed to perform this exercise, strengthening your abdominals. A strong core is essential for proper posture, mobility, and injury prevention.

Likewise, this workout defines the oblique muscles and is ideal if you are looking to strengthen your obliques.

GUARDS THE LOWER BACK

The technique of executing this workout puts less stress on the lower back compared to other regular crunches. Also, performing core strengthening workouts like the standing oblique crunch strengthens the back and helps alleviate back injuries, consequently protecting your lower back.

SHAPES THE WAISTLINE

The standing side crunch majorly works the obliques-the muscles that wrap the waist region. Training the oblique muscles shapes and tones the waistline and will do away with the “muffin tops” -the unattractive fat layer that builds on the waistline over time.

BALANCE BENEFITS

Fitness skills like coordination and balance are only trained by challenging them. Standing cross crunches can guarantee balance and coordination improvement. Being a resistance workout, standing oblique crunch has hypertrophy benefits your core muscles and improves your general body balance.

ALTERNATIVES TO THE STANDING OBLIQUE CRUNCH

STANDING CROSS CRUNCHES

Standing Cross Crunches, also known as standing knee-elbow crunch, is a great ab workout that will develop a strong and chiseled midsection. This workout is an ideal alternative if you’re looking to build your obliques and tone your abs.

STEPS:

  • Assume a hip-width stance with your hands beside your head and elbows flared out.
  • Move one shoulder in the direction of the opposite hip in a slow and controlled motion as far as comfortable. As you do this, lift the knee opposite the moving shoulder such that your knee and elbow nearly touch.
  • Resume the starting position in a slow and controlled manner.
  • Repeat the same sets of reps on the opposite knee.

OBLIQUE CRUNCHES

The oblique crunch is an excellent bodyweight workout that targets the abs and obliques as well, depending on your convenience, you can also consider this exercise since it offers the same health and fitness advantages.

  • Place a mat on the floor and lie on it on your right side. Ensure your legs are straight, your feet are off the ground, and put your left arm behind your head.
  • Bend your knees, lift your torso and contract your abs. Try touching your knee and elbow.
  • Stretch both legs and lower your torso to resume the initial position. Repeat the movement and switch to the opposite side.

Remember to brace your core, keep your back straight and ensure you begin each rep with your shoulders on the ground.

MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN PERFORMING THE STANDING OBLIQUE CRUNCH

RUSHING THE MOTION

One common mistake with standing cross crunches is rushing the motion. Performing the exercise in a rush builds momentum. This will engage other muscles and shift tension off the targeted muscle, reducing the effectiveness of the workout.

Correct this mistake by executing the workout slowly and controlled and making every rep deliberate. Crunches don’t have to be fast. Aim for slow and targeted reps.

PERFORMING TOO MANY REPS

A few crunches performed using the correct technique can be performed in the same amount of time as 100 rushed crunches with poor form. The workout is not about how many crunches you can perform. Concentrate on executing the workout with the correct form. When you start feeling fatigued, take a rest.

CONCLUSION

The standing oblique crunch remains vital for building and strengthening the abdominal muscles. This drill is ideal for working the entire core. However, it is not an excuse to completely ignore the floor abs workout.

If you consider incorporating this workout into your routine, choose the appropriate sets and reps depending on your fitness level. Vary your workouts by performing other crunches that target the same muscles.

Now get to work and train those abs correctly!