Raised Knee Barbell Crunches – Abs Exercise Guide with Photos


Anyone who wants a tight, flat stomach and ripped abs should consider adding raised knee barbell crunches into their exercise routine. This exercise is useful in targeting more than just the core areas of the body. As long as this exercise is performed correctly, it can provide some amazing results.



Exercise Instructions: Lie flat on your back on the floor on a mat with your knees raised and your feet above the floor. You can also lie on a flat or decline bench to perform this exercise as well. Grab a barbell and start with the bar on your chest as though you were preparing to perform a bench press. Begin by simultaneously raising your torso in a crunching fashion and pressing the bar to an overhead position. Slowly return to the starting position and repeat.

Muscles Targeted: Raised knee barbell crunches target multiple primary and secondary muscle groups. Core and torso areas are extremely targeted along with the muscles in the pecs, deltoids and triceps. In the core area, the abs and lower back are working simultaneously with the chest and the shoulders of the torso area. This makes it a very good abdominal exercise along with working many muscles of the upper body.

Why This Exercise is Important: This exercise is important because it not only builds strength in the abs but also the core muscles and torso. By keeping your lower legs raised in the air, it targets the lower abdominals and also works the legs.

Things To Avoid: There are many things to avoid when executing raised knee barbell crunches. It is most important to keep a flat lower back the entire time this exercise is performed. Also, do not strain or put too much pressure on the neck. This is especially important because it is possible to add unnecessary strain on one’s neck when doing ab exercises. It would also be best to use smooth fluid motions, and do not jerk or struggle when crunching the lower and upper body. Weights too heavy on the barbell can also cause more pain than gain. Failure to follow these suggestions will lead to discomfort and possible injury.

Reps and Sets: The reps and sets will vary for raised knee barbell crunches. Of course it depends on the goals of the participant using this exercise and their overall fitness level. 3-4 sets will be adequate for most people using this exercise and reps will depend on the amount of weight used on the barbell. Lower weights can go for higher reps per set. It is recommended that the reps should decrease as the weight increases. It may also be best to have a spotter available for this exercise, just in case the weight is too heavy.

Other Exercises To Use: There are many other exercises that can help supplement raised knee barbell crunches. One can never go wrong with simple abdominal crunches for the core muscles. Exercise ball abdominal crunches take abdominal crunches to the next level, as the lower back gets more relief by resting on the ball, which precisely focuses on the abs. Abdominal butt raises can help focus on those gluteal areas, lower back, and hamstring muscles. An abdominal crunch machine can also be used to help maintain form and avoid injury. The benefits of the raised knee barbell crunch are endless, it would only make sense for someone to add this exercise to their routine. View our extensive database of exercise guides for a comprehensive list of exercises that target the abs.

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