No. It is not bad for your back to perform a maximal set of sit-ups as you
On the other hand it is definitely not recommended for the vast majority to overwork the hip
flexor muscles, which is common in abdominal exercises such as in the sit-up form
Due to our sedentary lifestyles which usually include ample sessions of
sitting, our hip flexor muscles become extremely tight.
Tight hip flexor muscles can actually pull your pelvis anteriorly. This
excessive anterior pelvic tilt causes the lower back to arch excessively. This
excessive arch in the lower back is called lordosis.
Putting your body out of alignment can lead to multiple problems, because
after all, your body is a kinetic chain and it is only as strong as the weakest
link. Excessive anterior pelvic tilt worsened by improper sit-up form can
render your abdominal exercises useless and possibly even cause problems in the
joints throughout your whole body including the ankles, knees, and shoulders.
Get a Professional Opinion:
recommend you find a certified personal trainer at your local gym or a physical therapist
and ask them to analyze your static and dynamic posture. Don't be alarmed
by this long drawn out response. This is just to show you what could
happen and it's often not as simple as something that is correct or incorrect.
Sit-ups were once thought to be the best exercise for abdominal muscle
strength and endurance but there are far superior exercises for abdominal
development. The sit-up form in your fitness test were likely implemented
because by touching your elbows to knees it is easy to see if you're cheating or
Although the sit-up form you mention is working the hip flexors more than the
abdominals, you should train using full range of motion (as you mention) sit-ups
so you can improve and be ready for the test. Once you have the job you can then
stop this sit-up form and begin performing
a wide variety of crunches and core exercises.
make sure you stretch your hip flexors to keep them at optimal length.
Check out the following articles to learn more about posture and how
to correct muscle imbalances. Even if you think your posture is great,
you may want to take a look at the article anyways, just in case. Plus,
we give you some great tips which may come in handy down the road. Once
you're confident your posture is all in order, see our 100 abdominal
exercises article for over 100 effective exercises.
Hundred Abdominal Exercise Demonstration Videos
Free exercise video demonstrations for your entire core including oblique
exercises, core exercises, and exercises for the rectus abdominis or six pack.
Remember to first to get your posture assessed before beginning if you want to
achieve optimal results.
More Posture Correction Information
What exactly is a hunch back? We explain. One of the more common postural problems is protracted shoulders which
some call hunchbacks, humped backs, and even Quasimodo. Learn how to decrease
your chances of developing this unsightly postural problem.