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Polykinetics and The S.E.L.F. Method  -Founder:  Michelle L Vargas CPI

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If you hate conventional ab crunches, you're going to love the Polykinetics vertical core crunch

The Polykinetics vertical core crunch move is the most commonly used exercise within all of Polykinetics. Building body strength in this method always begins in the core. So what the hell is it? This post will tell you that, as well as, how to do a VCC.


Plus, a few examples of VCC kinetic variations that allows participants to engage additional muscle groups or seamlessly switch up the area of focus even in the middle of a sequence just by making some very small physical changes to the body's positioning. This effect when performed with multiple people, creates a type of kinetic art within a workout. Neat visual effect to say the least, but enough on aesthetics, because when it comes to looks, there is nothing more weird looking than this exercise. It feels even more awkward because it works the body and muscles in a way most people are not accustomed to, and their

Let’s begin!


What is a VCC? –Similar in principle to the well-known, conventional crunch exercise, the biggest difference stems from the change in body positioning; which has been rotated 90-degrees into a comfortable standing position with equal weight distribution between the left and right leg (known as: body balance)


  • The back is straight and hips are comfortably supporting the lower body with ease. Arms resting down at your sides or comfortably resting on top of the head with fingers interlocked. It's your choice! **Form quality and control are vital to the VCC’s effectiveness!


What are the benefits of the VCC? The applied effort and energy required to do a VCC is a fraction of the effort and energy required to do a conventional crunch. Meaning you are able to go harder and last longer…building up your endurance as you strengthen your muscles! Two with the energy of one

The VCC offers a much more pragmatic body stance with less stress, strain and pressure applied to the neck and spine –IT’S SAFER!

  • Engages all of the core muscles, as well as, the upper back and shoulders when specific VCC kinetic variations are utilized in tandem with the base VCC

  • Increased oxygen intake to the brain giving participants an "instant mental clarity", and helps to prevent hyperventilation; safe-guarding the respiratory system

  • Improves various gross motor skills

  • Decreases risk of injury due to its low impact design

How do you do a VCC?

  • The base VCC (arms not utilized) is quite simple really. Starting from a standing position with proper form in the back (lower body/legs remain isometric against the floor/ground), the upper body (top of the head to the bottom of the sternum) is lifted in an upward motion, and then, “crunched” downward in a controlled manner. The shoulders are moving in a slight “back and forth” motion at an equal speed and intensity as the core. Arms/hands can either remain tucked in or placed comfortably on top of the head with fingers interlocked (this is more challenging to physically do than keeping the arms tucked in close to the body.) Try it!

  • Motion is repeated as instructed for a given period of time.


What are some of the VCC move variations and different intensity levels?

  • The VCC move has many variations which are categorized by numerical labels….ex. VCC 2, VCC 3, VCC 4, etc. –However, there are only 3 intensity levels, which are… J1 (lowest) J2 (moderate) J3 (highest)

These are written in a sequence as: (VCC 3/J2) which simply means to do the VCC move, #3 variation at a moderate applied-intensity level.


Here are a few examples and basic breakdown of the different types of VCC exercise variations and the unique benefit each variation offers to a Polykinetics workout!


+ VCC 2 = Arms are bent at the elbow at a 90-degree angle, hands are in tight fists and then moving the arms forward and backward in sequence with the core.

  • Benefit: This variation allows for increased oxygen intake and improved blood circulation. In addition to, strengthening and toning the shoulder muscles, under the arms, and chest muscles all at the same time. Remember....if it looks silly, but it works, then it's not silly.

+ VCC 3 = Leaning the body slightly forward, arms are tucked in tightly to the chest, fists under the chin and upper body is then lifted upward and crunched downward to either the left or right side; alternating from side to side! –Generally, making an “arch” movement with the torso and upper body.

  • Benefit: Tones the sides of the core, strengthens the lower back, and infuses cardio-benefits when done at a particular speed.

+ VCC 4 = The arms are simply extended in front of you, elbows locked, hands = “fists”, with the legs together and isometric. Upper body and arms are held in position as the core muscles “pulse” contract. There should be very minimal movements from the upper body and lower body.

  • Benefit: Higher intensity core muscle contractions and increased muscle control.

+ VCC 5 = Similar to VCC 4, your arms still extended, but your hands are flat and positioned with one on top of the other and elbows locked. –Making a “V” or triangle shape with the arms. Shoulders will naturally move back and forth slightly with each core muscle contractions but the arms themselves maintain their isometric position.

  • Benefit: Highest core muscle contractions and increased upper body muscle control. A form of isometric-resistance training.

And these are just a FEW examples of different kinetic variations of this ONE exercise move. There are more VCC variations than what I have listed above which will be discussed in a future blog post, as well as, discussing the exercise moves used in Polykinetics and their simplistic variations that could ultimately change how people workout and get healthy using the most simplistic, yet effective way possible!


Work smarter, not harder!

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