Core Training Basics

I remember years ago I read an article that said sit-ups are no good for your stomach muscles and would actually bloat your guts so that you actually look fat because of the increased muscle mass there, instead, the article said, I should be working my core with other exercises, see this article that I found: The 21 Best Bodyweight Exercises for a Strong Core, no where does the regular  military sit-up get a mention.

Six months later: At this stage I was doing heavy weight training four times a week and karate 4 days a week, a huge amount of core training until… one day I tried to do one sit-up on an incline sit-up bench, and to my embarasment I got stuck with my back flat on the bench, I couldn’t even do one sit-up!

Back to basics!

I decided right there to return to the mighty sit-up. Sit-ups are hard, core training is easy. And if sit ups are too easy for you, hold a dumbbell, weight plate or medicine ball on your chest.

Intense core training using a dumbell
Intense core training using a dumbbell
Intense core training

Your core will get such a workout doing sit-ups that it will beg for you to return to the sissy core exercises you thought where the new way of training your core.

Elite soldiers do sit-ups so we should too.

Army sit-ups
The Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT) includes sit-ups in their test to test the athleticism of its soldiers, if its good for them it’s good for you.
Let’s all forget about what we have been taught about the “new” and “best” way to train our core and start doing regular sit-ups again.

Crunches are not the same as sit-ups. Crunches only isolate the abdominal muscle without training the whole core.

All the core exercises combined will not work the core like regular sit-ups.

How to.

  • Hook our feet under something or get somebody to hold your feet down with your legs at a 45° angle at the knee.
  • Lie down flat on your back.
  • Put your hands behind your head interlocking your fingers. If this is too hard, put your hands next to your ears or even fold your arms in front of you for starters. If this is too easy, hold a dumbbell or medicine ball on your chest.
  • Sit-up until you’re at the top with your abdominal muscles relaxed.
  • Return back to the ground with your back flat on the ground.
  • Repeat.

Happy core, happy life.

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