Wheel crunches are a type of abdominal exercise ideal for comprehensively working the middle zone. Including them at the beginning of a gym routine is an excellent physical warm-up method.
Wheel crunches are among the best exercises for developing the rectus abdominis muscles. As well as its different variants, they also allow the work of the obliques and internal muscles of the abdomen.
This article describes how to use the abdominal wheel, the front wheel crunch technique, and what are the most common mistakes in beginners, just as they are compared to other abdominal exercises to determine if they work or not.
How to use the abdominal wheel correctly?
When doing wheel crunches, you should always support your body weight with your abdomen. A beginner is advised to use the knees for support. The glutes and spine must be kept firm and aligned at all times.
For them to work, the objective when doing this exercise must be to tension the middle zone; the rest of the muscles must work secondarily.
The abdominal wheel must rest on a smooth surface without stones or irregularities that could deviate the direction. A beginner should support the knees on a mat when using the abdominal wheel.
Using the abdominal wheel allows you to prepare the body for a training session. It works to achieve the six-pack. In static exercise mode, they will enable you to activate the internal muscles and those of the lower abdomen.
Wheel Crunches – Correct Technique For Beginners
The correct technique of the wheel crunches is simple, making it a recommended exercise for beginners. However, inevitable common mistakes should be avoided.
To do wheel crunches correctly, you must start on your stomach. The wheel should be taken with light support for the body’s weight.
The legs should be at an angle of 60 degrees and about 30 cm apart, at the height of the hips. The back must not bear a load.
The glutes must be kept tight. The head should follow the path of the spine. Avoid looking to the sides or curving your neck.
At the end of the movement, the idea is to bend the back with the strength of the abdominals slightly.
In the extension of the movement, the core must remain firm, forming a thin line with the ground.
Do rolling crunches work?
Roller crunches are one of the best exercises to achieve the six-pack, and yes, they work. Studies have made it clear that the abdominal wheel is one of the best accessories for strengthening the midsection. (1)
Wheel crunches are used to strengthen both the external and internal muscles of the midsection. By doing this type of sit-up, the capacity of the muscular work of the abdomen and the body-to-body relationship of the middle zone is improved.
Essential when using the abdominal wheel is not to excessively increase the repetitions of the exercise. But strive to improve technique. Incorrect technique can lead to chronic lower back injuries and neck and nape pain.
Wheel abs benefits:
- Develop upper, middle, and inner abdominal muscles
- Develop the muscles of the diaphragm
- Improve posture
- Reduce waist circumference
- Avoid sports injuries in the lower examples of exercises and types of sit-ups with wheel
There are different types of abdominal exercises with a wheel. A beginner is recommended to start with the traditional kneeling knees.
An advanced-level athlete can alternate supports, push-ups using the wheel, or variations in direction to work on the lateral areas.
In the following video, you can see examples of different exercises for both beginner and advanced levels:
Common mistakes when doing wheel crunches
Despite the apparent simplicity of the exercise, beginners often make a host of common mistakes in technique. Hunching your back or shifting the load onto your arms is one of the most common mistakes when exercising with wheels.
The most common mistakes when doing wheel crunches are raising the upper torso, turning the pelvis downward, and placing the feet too far apart. If this habit is made regular, it can cause lower back injuries.
Comparison of the abdominal wheel with other exercises
In a study (1) where the effectiveness of wheel exercises vs. crunches vs. abdominal planks has been compared, it has been made clear that the functional wheel is one of the exercises that work best.
In this study, a coefficient was assigned to each exercise according to its effects on the development of the abdominal muscles. The front plates with a value of 100 were taken as a basis. Higher values mean better work and core development.
|1. “Bicicleta” – Bicycle Maneuver||248|
|2. Fixed bar leg raises – Hanging leg raise||212|
|3. Sit – ups on the ball – Excercise ball||139|
|4. Leg and pelvic raises – Leg raise||129|
|5. Wheel crunches – Torso track||127|
|6. Abdominal curl with straight arms – Long arm crunch||119|
|7. Inverted Crunches – Reverse Crunch||109|
|8. Sit-ups on the Ab Roller machine – Ab Roller||105|
|9. Plank face down – Plank||100|
|10. Sit-ups on the Ab Rocker Machine – Ab Rocker||21|
Effect on the lateral muscles of the abdomen
|1. Fixed bar leg raises – Hanging leg raise||310|
|2. “Bicicleta” – Bicycle Maneuver||290|
|3. Inverted Crunches – Reverse Crunch||240|
|4. Plank face down – Plank||230|
|5. Leg and pelvic raises – Leg raise||216|
|6. Sit – ups on the ball – Excercise ball||147|
|7. Wheel crunches – Torso track||145|
|8. Abdominal curl with straight arms – Long arm crunch||118|
|9. Sit-ups on the Ab Roller machine – Ab Roller||101|
|10. Sit-ups on the Ab Rocker Machine – Ab Rocker||74|
Abdominal wheel exercises show better results than traditional crunches. However, there are even more effective exercises like cycling crunches.
- Wheel crunches are a fundamental exercise for working the abdomen and activating the core. They are an ideal exercise as a physical warm-up method before a gym routine.
- How to do sit-ups with a wheel? – Remember that the muscles of the middle zone are the ones that must be activated. Do not try to shift body weight onto the joints or lower back.
- The support points for traditional wheel exercises are the knees. Remember to exhale at the top of the movement. Positioning the buttocks exaggeratedly up is one of the most common mistakes when doing wheel exercises.