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Country Vocals Lessons: Body - Core Strength - Crunches

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For most of the core strength
work that I do,
I like to use a stability ball.
It's not necessary, but
I highly recommend it.
It helps alleviate stress on your neck.
You can do, obviously, crunches and
core work without a stability ball.
You just have to be very careful that you
are in a posture that doesn't stress your
neck and your lower back.
So I always use a stability ball, cuz then
I know that I'm protecting my neck and
my lower back.
It makes it very easy.
It's a little tough to travel with,
[LAUGH] so there's that disadvantage.
But any time I'm home and I have
the opportunity, I'm on my stability ball.
But you can adapt to all of
these core strength exercises.
To just lying on the floor or
at the edge of a bed or
in a sitting position on a chair,
so you can adapt them all.
But I recommend getting a stability ball.
The first exercise we're gonna
do is just simple crunches.
And if you lay back on the stability ball
and just kind of open your chest first.
Feels great just to kind
of stretch out your chest.
This is of course all opening
up your breathing mechanism.
And you wanna get it so
that your knees are pointing
forward about hip distance apart.
And that your upper legs
are parallel to the floor, so
you've got like a 90 degree angle here.
And just rest comfortably on the ball,
you can feel that you're having to engage
your core already, so I can already feel
that my core muscles are engaged, this
is actually a good exercise right here.
Another great thing about the stability
ball is that you're working core
every time you adjust to balance.
You're not conscious of it so much but
your balance depends very
much on your core strength..
So just having a wobbly surface
like the stability ball,
you're constantly adjusting for
balance which is working your core.
So we're gonna just do simple crunches
where you're supporting your head with you
hands locked behind the back of your
skull, the bottom of your head.
And we're just gonna do
very simple crunches.
Straight up, forward, center.
We'll do ten.
And if you exhale every time you lift,
you are further engaging your core.
You'll really feel that.
So you can do eight or ten going forward.
And then rotate to the left and
to the right alternating.
Very gently,
you don't wanna pull your lower back.
You don't wanna stress anything out.
But Just a simple series of sit-up
crunches and concentrating on
keeping that core nice and engaged and
your shoulders and neck relaxed.
If you scan through your body from time
to time and make sure that you're not
clenching up, you don't want any
tension in your face or in your jaw.
You wanna make sure that everything
in your body is nice and relaxed.
So, start with ten orward.
And maybe alternating ten,
left, right, ten.
See how that feels?
If that feels solid,
work yourself toward 20, 25, 50.
When I've really been on a roll,
I can get 100 crunches in,
in a day, in a morning,
and it feels great.
There's crunches.