Do Crunches Give You Abs?: An Overview

 by Dr. Steve Hruby, D.C.

I’m a fitness advocate with a holistic approach to health, wellness, and longevity. I’ve walked the walk since 2009 - using my personal development methods to unleash the fitness champ within you.

  Fact Checked
 by Rhealyn Celestial
Reviewed by Rhealyn Celestial

I’m a researcher, and I’m also a full-time mom. I spend my weekdays crafting thoughtful articles for small businesses, and my weekends with my son learning about the world together

If your goal is to get those abdominal muscles, you need to work on them a lot. Okay, so what exercise do we need to do? Crunches! Do crunches give you abs? How many hours do we need to invest in abs exercises?

Everyone’s body is unique and responds differently. The challenge is to understand how some people have six-pack abs. Why aren’t we getting abs even when we do 100 crunches a day? My friend, because you are probably doing it in the wrong way!

Crunches are a part of our everyday core training routine, but there is much more to it. Stay tuned to know more about crunches workouts and what is the correct way to get your desired physique.

How To Do Crunches?

There are different types of crunches, but the common one is performed on the ground. To make it comfortable, do it on a yoga mat or carpet.

To Do a Crunch:

  • Lie down straight facing the ceiling. Keep legs on the floor hip-width apart. Bend knees and place arms across the chest. Contract abs and inhale.
  • Exhale while lifting the body. Relax your head and neck.
  • Inhale and repeat the position.


  • Use your core to raise your upper body, do not try to do it with your head or neck. It may get injured due to pressure.
  • If you move slowly and steadily, you may not be able to engage the muscles by making rapid movements.
  • Once you have mastered crunches workouts, you can place your hand behind your head to support your neck.

Tip: Try Reverse Crunch- Bring your knees towards your chest, extend your legs back out, and touching your heels on the ground is a great alternative to a standard crunch. To avoid a rounded back, move through your lower back.

How Effective Are Crunches as an Abs Exercise?

Crunches feel the best while performing, but it is not the most effective abs exercise. It is intense abdominal isolation though you need to alternate it with cardio, abs exercises, and a healthy lifestyle to see visible results. Variations in the movements and positions are required to get the desired results.

What Other Exercises Are More Effective?

Now you know that solely crunches won’t help you. What are you going to do in your next gym session then?

Since everyone’s metabolism and anatomy differ, there is no one-size-fits-all formula. We know that perfect six abs are a combination of a controlled lifestyle, eating habits, genetics, hormones, and routine exercise.

fit woman doing a side crunch exercise outdoors

However, you can try alternate exercises at the gym. For detailed information, check How to lose belly fat with a workout machine. Try mix-matching the following options to burn fats from upper abs, lower abs, and obliques. For this, repeat each exercise for 45 seconds to one minute.

  • Dolphin Push-Ups: Begin a forearms plank by keeping your spine long and neck neutral. Inhale while drawing abs towards your spine and push hips upwards. Exhale and bring back your hips to the starting position. Repeat.
  • Hip Dips: Start with a forearm plank. Maintain a stable upper body and twist your hips left and right while drawing your abs towards your spine. Then, pause for a few seconds and bounce back. Repeat on alternative sides.
  • Standing Lunge: Twist stand with your shoulders drawn downwards by clasping your hands in front of you with elbows close to your body. Keep your right knee aligned with your right ankle, step your left leg back, and lower into the reverse lunge. Bring your left leg back and drop into a reverse lunge, keeping your right knee in line with your right ankle. Turn to the right before coming back to the middle. Bring the left foot back to meet the right foot to repeat the motion. Continually switch sides.
  • Leg Dips: Lie on your back with abs drawn in and hip tilted towards the ceiling with flexed feet. Keep arms by your side with palm facing down, and press into the floor as you lift your leg straight towards the ceiling. Pause while keeping your ankles over your hips, then slowly get back to your position.
  • Sit-ups: Crunches are an effective exercise, primarily for the abdominal muscles. But sit-ups are also effective to make your chest, abdominal muscles, lower back, leg muscles, and hip flexors stronger. It aids in reducing back injury risk and postural problems. Incorrect upright sitting might result in severe back injury. So, you should start slowly with minimum reps.

How To Do Sit-ups Alone?

  • Sit up by yourself and lie down with your legs bent. You can hook something to your lower body to achieve stability, but this will place more emphasis on your lower body.
  • Aim to position your hands behind your head, across your chest, or directly behind your torso. For flexible neck muscles, tuck your head out.
  • To sit up straight, curl your upper body forward using your abdomen.
  • Get back to the first position. Breathe out while lifting your upper body, and then take a breath in when your lower back touches down.

How To Get Abs?

You are working harder to attain your objective through crunches and fitness training, but if you are away, you may add a few suggestions to obtain prominent abs. Over time, following these guidelines will help you flatten and tone your stomach.

  1. Seven hours of sleep is a must: As per CDC, not getting enough sleep is associated with weight gain. An adult needs 7-8 hours of sound sleep for a healthy mind and body.
  1. Exercise regularly with cardio and weight training: Exercise helps reduce body fat, manage weight, reduce cardiovascular disease risk, strengthen bones and muscles, and keep you energized throughout the day.
  1. Eat a high protein, leafy vegetable, and fruits diet: Eat a balanced diet containing fresh vegetables and seasonal fruits help in weight management. Ensuring adequate protein helps in building muscles and fat loss.
  1. Keep yourself hydrated: Replacing sugary drinks with water aids weight loss by helping you burn fat and lose stubborn inches from your belly. Few lifestyle modifications might result in significant transformation.

Addressing the Questions That You Are Probably Looking For

woman doing crunches on a gym mat

Will 100 Crunches a Day Give You Abs?

It’s not enough to do 100 crunches a day to get abs and lose fat from your belly. In addition, you need to follow a healthy diet, exercise with weights, and undertake cardio.

How Many Crunches Does It Take To Get Abs?

To get abs, an individual should repeat 10-12 repetitions and three sets of crunches. But crunches alone are not likely to do the job. You should engage in variations like reverse crunches, bicycle crunches, and other abs workouts to build strength.

How Long Do You Have To Do Crunches To Get Abs?

Unveiling your abs can take 3 months to 2 years (it may vary from person to person). A safe thumb rule is to lose 1 to 2 percent body fat per month.

Do Ab Workouts Give You a Six-pack?

Yes, it provides you with defined six-pack abs only when you remove subcutaneous fat from the abdominal area. But you should not only rely on crunches to a six-pack, but the other factors including full body training and diet are also equally important.


Everyone wants to show off their powerful, well-muscled physique and six-pack abs, right! Models and celebs present toned abs as being simpler. It depends on your anatomy, diet, posture, and lifestyle that need to be maintained to achieve your goal.

Crunches are not a bad exercise if done in the correct way. But you also need to introduce other exercises, cardio and a healthy diet to get the abs.

Your dreamy abs are coming soon!

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