Abdominal Crunches: Troubleshooting
Keep your neck in line with your spine. Don't stick your chin out. Don't hold your breath. To keep chest and shoulders open, keep your elbows out of your line of vision.
Begin by lying on your back with feet flat on the floor and palms supporting your head. Press your low back down. Contract abdominals and raise first your head (tucking your chin slightly), then your neck, shoulders, and upper back off the floor.
Beginners may start doing push-ups leaning into their kitchen counters, then working their way down to a desk or chair, onto the floor with knees bent, and on the floor on their toes. To make it harder, put your feet on a stair, bench, or couch while maintaining good form.
Why it's a winner: Push-ups strengthen the chest, shoulders, triceps, and core muscles.
How to: Face-down, place hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Place toes or knees on the floor, creating a smooth line with your body, from shoulders to knees or feet. Keeping rear-end muscles and abdominals engaged, lower and lift your body by bending and straightening your elbows, keeping your torso stable throughout the move.