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How do you get from crunch to Atlas situps?
 
 
Greg Newton Greg Newton is offline
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01-29-2010, 02:39 PM
 
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Have you tried to use your arms more in an effort to help you get off the floor? Greg N. stated he needed to do this and I still do this when I get tired. Put your arms over your head and then move them towards your legs using them to propel your upper body up. This may help your body get used to leveraging itself up from the floor. After time you don't need to use so much arm movement.

Some peoples body mechanics just aren't made for doing these full range. If your legs are shorter than your upper body or your legs come off the ground because your upper body weighs a lot more than your lower you can have a lot of difficulty.
I learned this from a Pilates book, BUT in the A&E Atlas Video, C/A has a class of women on the beach doing Dynamic Tension and this is the version of the situp that is being performed; arms above head, reaching forward and touching the toes. It took time for me to do more than 10 this way. Eventually I moved to sets of 25-50. As my waist started going down, the situps became easier and I began cupping my ears at my head.

I used to think I didn't have the leverage to do situps. However, the problem was spinal flexibility and the size of my waist. Also, it wasn't all fat. The combination of a hietal hernia and the hundreds of 90 degree leg raises I did for Kajukenbo had thickened my abdominal muscles, making them bulge even more than if had just been fat. Crunches, done in 100's of reps, being a limited isolation movement could also cause the waist to thicken.

Greg Newton
 
 
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MikeNY MikeNY is offline
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01-29-2010, 02:59 PM
 
Greg those Atlas Beach situps for women are also the old Military Situp. These were used in High Schools also.

jonlclay: When you throw the arms forward it does assist in lifting a man but then back muscles then are playing a role. That can hurt the back but usually doesn't. PS so watch your back.



Last edited by MikeNY; 01-29-2010 at 03:02 PM.
 
 
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Greg Newton Greg Newton is offline
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01-29-2010, 04:26 PM
 
Good points Mike. The key to the Atlas situp done in this fashion is to curl the spine rather than to just situp. It takes time to develop the isometric strength in the legs to keep them from flying up. As an aside on crunches: done with tension reps and done at multiple angles, they can be a great exercise. Done for hundreds of reps in one direction they will thicken the upper abdominal ridge. Hundreds of reps of the Atlas situp on the other hand will not do this, because this is more of total body exercise that works the abdominal muscles through a greater ranger of motion.
 
 
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jonlclay jonlclay is offline
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01-29-2010, 05:05 PM
 
Greg & Mike,

Good points. I've been working to improve my Atlas Situps to help with a lower back issue and have started to perform them differently from in the past. I used to just sit up as with my back very straight, This causes me pain. I'm now curling up very slowly one vertebrae at a time like Greg has said. I do the same when going back down. I've noticed that in performing them this way my back does not hurt as much but also, I'm unable to perform as many as before, but feel this way will improve not only my core but also my flexibility.

Thanks for the suggestions guys.

Jon
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ShrinkingGuy ShrinkingGuy is offline
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04-27-2010, 08:42 PM
 
Charles Atlas for the win...

Charles Atlas suggests doing these in bed before you get up in his course.
I figured if I couldn't do them on the floor, I couldn't do them in a soft bed with even less firm traction.

Well I tried it a week ago and guess what. I can totally hammer these out on the bed.
I have to use a bit of an arm swing to get fully up on any rep after 10, but by golly, CA was right again...but to be fair he never mentioned that this protocol made it an easier move to do.

That guy just never goes out of style.
 
 
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