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Sit-up Exercise

Essential Exercise

This is the standard sit up exercise but it never hurts to go over proper form. Back injuries can occur when sit ups are not done properly, plus you won't get the results you're seeking if they are not done correctly.

Sit Up Power Tip

Hold a light weight on your chest with both hands such as a one to three pound dumbbell, or perhaps a can of soup. This will add a bit more resistance to help develop strong, tight ab muscles.

How to perform The Sit-up Exercise:

  1. Lie on your back, knees bent, feet flat on the floor and hands at your sides (beginner) or behind ears (advanced).
  2. Lift your torso to an upright position, then lower it.

Sit-up Exercise

Improper Procedures

Not coming all the way up to the vertical position (do not let your elbows touch your knees; your elbows should pass your knees). Releasing your hands from behind your neck (do not count these).

Using the Bent Knee Sit Up to Evaluate Muscular Strength

Purpose: To determine the strength and endurance of the abominal muscles and the hip flexors.

Have a partner kneel on one knee and place the knee between your feet while grasping both of your ankles. A full sit-up is counted when you have curled your back and raised your trunk until your lower back is at least perpendicular to the floor and then have returned to the starting position.

Repeat the procedure as many times as possible. Have the holder count out loud, emphasizing every fifth sit-up. This assists the performer and also lessens the risk of losing count. Your score will be the number of sit-ups completed in a 2-minute time period. Resting is permitted, but only on your back with hands in the proper position.


  • 26 to 18 sit-ups in 2 minutes: Very poor.
  • 27 to 32 sit-ups in 2 minutes: Poor.
  • 33 to 38 sit-ups in 2 minutes: Fair.
  • 39 to 44 sit-ups in 2 minuts: Average
  • 45 to 50 sit-ups in 2 minutes: Good.
  • 51 to 56 sit-ups in 2 minutes: Excellent.
  • 57 to 66-plus sit-ups in 2 minutes: Super.

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