It’s amazing how many tweets and FB posts I see regularly about “the best core workouts” and “zap your belly fat with these 5 crunch exercises”….honestly, I literally shake my head at each one that passes my way…simply because…I absolutely hate working out on the floor! I am a mom and I am greatly aware of what my daughter drops on my floors on a daily basis, not to mention, the high amount of foot traffic going in and out all day, everyday; dropping dirt particles of who-knows-what in the process! Eww! On top of the dirt factor, conventional crunches always seemed to hurt me more than help me. I would do conventional sets only to be icing my neck and back area instead of my core. So again, there are some major roadblocks between myself and conventional crunches.
Having a super uptight workout preference automatically gives me, in my perspective, “valid excuses” to NOT EVER do conventional crunches, but on the flip side; no one, not even myself, can deny the effectiveness of conventional ab crunches. They are a big upgrade from those damn near obsolete sit-ups, but that fact alone wasn’t good enough for me to do conventional crunches regularly. So as I have done before, I looked for ways to get around my “excuses”. I am just stubborn like that I guess. –After some brainstorming and trying/testing different things, I came to love and live by the modified VERTICAL CORE CRUNCHES aka VCC’s. Here’s why….
1.) NO GETTING DOWN ON THE FLOOR EVER – Excuse completely gone! –VCC’s are done from a standing position (even in a sitting position, I’ve tried as well!), but absolutely no more dirty floor touching! Did you know 90% of what is on your shoes can transfer directly to tile or carpet?!!! And that some shoes can carry up towards 66 MILLION bacterial organisms? Pretty jarring for the average person, and an absolute no-go for myself. The part B of “no getting on the floor”, and more importantly than being a mild germaphobe is reducing, if not, completely preventing common difficulties in breathing abilities due to those who have very heavy upper bodies…ladies, if you’re stacked on top, then I know you can relate to the struggle! But really for anyone who just happens to carry a lot of weight in their upper body, conventional crunches can make you feel like you are suffocating yourself with your own body! NO THANK YOU!
2.) REMOVING ALL pulling and tugging on the neck or back area – Problem fixed! –VCC’s don’t ever require you to pull on the neck or overextend the spine against its natural curvature! Preventing a lot of unnecessary discomfort and pain later!
Just looking at this illustration is hurting my neck! There’s now a better way!
3.) SAVES VITAL ENERGY! –VCC’s are great because unlike conventional crunches, you can switch from working the core, to working the core AND lower body, or going from the core to incorporating the upper body in under a single second! No more wasting crucial energy going up and down off the floor to switch your workout focus. Conventional crunches limit your range of motion, therefore, you have to put forth twice as much energy and effort to get 50% of the benefits! Not good! –VCC’s give out exactly what you put in with every “crunch”!
4.) VCC’S are FULLY ADJUSTABLE at…..with very small modifications to your body’s equilibrium, you can either add in the upper body or lower body simply by leaning slightly to the left or right side, slightly forward or backward; even raising your chin towards the ceiling will all increase or decrease the VCC intensity levels. There are numerous kinetic variations that can be utilized whenever you need to or want to, again, reaping the benefits of having an increased range of movement without complications. This gives you total freedom! VCC’s remove all the frustration and stresses completely of exercise change ups by simplifying the exercise process itself, and being ADHD/OCD, my brain is beyond grateful for simplicity!!
5.) VCC’s WORK MORE THAN JUST THE CORE!! –Yep, for some reason when I do VCC’s I feel “the burn” in my back, as well as, in the back of my legs. Since VCC’s do the same exact “concentrated muscle contraction” movement as the conventional way only with the increased range of motion, the “impact” of the VCC sends a ripple-effect, from the core to the back muscles and back to the core…think an internal vibration bouncing back and forth with every…single….muscle contraction; now multiple that effect of 1 crunch by 50, 100 or 500!. However many you do, you will build up the core, as well as, the back, shoulders, sides, butt and legs all concurrently! This particularly awesome benefit is nearly NON-EXISTENT with conventional crunches.
In conclusion…..VCC WINS!
Small changes make for BIG DIFFERENCES!!
Target area for conventional crunch exercises (left) in comparison to the modified, VCC exercise used in Polykinetics (right)
–All in all……those are just some of the benefits of doing VCC’s that I can pull off of the top of my head, and I am sure by now you get the point….
Point blank….conventional crunches trumped sit-ups in many ways, and the same goes for the VCC’s….they trump conventional crunches in many ways! Can’t deny it; which is exactly why VCC’s are the most commonly used base move exercise within the entire Polykinetics method!
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