Q: The place ought to I place my palms after I’m doing crunches? I’ve all the time put them behind my head, however I’ve been experiencing neck ache just lately and I feel it is perhaps from the crunches.
Based mostly on what you’re saying, your ache very nicely could also be from the crunches. Sadly, many health professionals proceed to show folks to put their palms behind their heads whereas performing this train. It’s a technique that may have detrimental penalties. Right here’s why:
When the palms are clasped behind the pinnacle throughout spinal flexion (a crunch), there’s a reflexive tendency to drag on the sternocleidomastoid muscle tissue of the neck. That is very true as a set turns into harder and also you’re struggling to finish the previous few reps. Along with considerably rising the potential for a neck pressure, this additionally introduces momentum into the motion, thereby reducing its effectiveness in growing your abs.
For greatest outcomes, it’s advisable to maintain your palms folded throughout your chest or, as a substitute, make fists and preserve them at your ears. It will make sure that the motion takes place completely at the focus – your abs, not your neck. In case you have weak neck muscle tissue, it’s greatest to make use of a tool like an ab curler or one of many many ab machines obtainable in your native fitness center. These items present a cushioned help on your head. Regardless, supporting your neck along with your palms will solely serve to exacerbate neck issues and impede outcomes.
Q: I hate my calves. They’re like sticks they usually make my thighs look larger than they really are. Assist!
Your plight is comprehensible. For most individuals, the calves are very tough to develop. There are two main causes for this. First, the calves are used greater than every other muscle tissue within the physique. They’re energetic each time you stand, to not point out stroll, run, or do any cell exercise, and subsequently are typically extra immune to train. What’s extra, the soleus muscle, one of many two main muscle tissue that make up the calves (the opposite is the gastrocnemius, or gastroc, for brief) is made up virtually completely of slow-twitch fibers. Sluggish-twitch fibers are endurance-based fibers which have little or no potential for development (versus fast-twitch fibers, that are strength-related and develop readily).
That mentioned, you possibly can enhance the looks of your calves should you’re keen to place within the effort and apply some good outdated train science. Right here’s how: The calves could be selectively focused through the use of two various kinds of actions. As a result of the gastroc crosses the knee joint, it’s positioned in a completely stretched place throughout workout routines the place the legs are saved straight, thereby maximizing stimulation of the muscle. Thus, standing calf raises, donkey calf raises, and toe presses are glorious selections for concentrating on this muscle. Because the fiber composition of the gastroc is about half fast-twitch/half slow-twitch, a rep vary of 8 to 10 per set is right for maximizing hypertrophy (muscle development).
The soleus, alternatively, doesn’t cross the knee joint. Due to this fact, it may be focused by workout routines during which the knees are bent. Any sort of seated calf motion will do the trick right here. Due to its endurance-based fiber composition, the next rep vary is mostly essential to actually fatigue this muscle. Purpose for a spread of 15 to twenty reps per set.
Three to 4 units of an train for every muscle shall be good. Carry out this routine a few instances per week, taking a minimum of 48 hours of relaxation between classes, and you must begin seeing these sticks flip into diamonds earlier than lengthy.