Forget planks, I did the jackknife sit-up for a week — here’s what happened to my abs TipTechBlog


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I’ve done a variety of crunches and sit-ups, and other core challenges over the past couple of  years, including tabletop, the x-plank, and the murderous, humbling V-sit-up. The jackknife sit-up is not dissimilar to the V sit-up, which was a worry when my editor offered it to me without looking me in the eye. Nor is the name designed to ease concerns: It puts me in mind of a jackknife dive, which requires a level of coordination I will never possess; an out-of-control 18-wheeler sliding across an icy highway; and, of course, a knife being opened. Jackknife, in fact, suggests an aggressive motion, but this is a move to be done smoothly and if you bear that in mind, it’s a great one.

What is it?

The jackknife is a fairly advanced variation on the sit-up and so this is not one for newcomers to sit-ups or crunches. Even those who are comfortable performing the standard move will find this a challenge, but it’s well worth the considerable effort. It involves raising your legs at the same time as your raise your arms and upper body, but — and this is important — you don’t have to create that V shape beloved of the shamelessly flexible. In fact, you can perform this move using bent legs.

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