How to Do a Sit-Up

Lately, the sit-up has been replaced by the stomach crunch. That's too bad, since a crunch won't help you get up off the ground—a fundamental daily movement.


  • : Always consult a physician before attempting any exercise program.
  • Step 1: Step 1: Lie face up Lie face up on the floor.
  • Step 2: Step 2: Bend knees Bend your knees so that your feet are flat on the floor.
  • Step 3: Step 3: Place hands behind head Place your hands on the back of your head with your elbows out to the side. Lace your fingers behind your head.
  • Step 4: Step 4: Lift off ground In one motion, squeeze your stomach muscles, lift your shoulders off the floor, and bring your torso upright while keeping your neck straight and your elbows out.
  • TIP: Don’t put strain on your neck with your arms—lift with your abs.
  • Step 5: Step 5: Lower yourself back down Slowly lower yourself back down with a curved back, one vertebra at a time.
  • TIP: If you’re having trouble, tuck your feet under something sturdy like a bed or couch to make your sit-ups easier.
  • Step 6: Step 6: Repeat until exhausted Do sit-ups until you’re exhausted, then—if you’re really hardcore—just roll over on your stomach and start cranking out those push-ups.
  • FACT: A proper sit-up—one where your feet aren’t braced—also uses stabilizer muscles in your hips and back, making it good for more than just a six-pack.

You Will Need

  • A clean carpeted or padded floor surface
  • Something sturdy to tuck your feet under
  • like a bed or a couch

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