Calories Burned Calculator for Side Crunches
Side crunches are also known as oblique crunches, and they aim to target your obliques and the abdominal muscles on the side of your body. They are a great way to strengthen your abs and develop a strong and toned midsection.
Side crunches are also a great way to burn calories and get an intense ab workout at the same time. The exercise allows you to burn about 4.1 calories each minute, equating to about 246 calories per hour.
Want to know if you should add side crunches to your routine? Read on to find out all the benefits of side crunches and whether or not they’re worth your time.
Calories Burned with Ab Exercises (weight: 170 lbs)
|Exercises||MET||30 min.||60 min.|
|Abdominal Roll Wheel||4||162||324|
|Hanging Knee Tucks||3.2||130||259|
How the Side Crunch Calculator Works
Our calculator uses a MET value to give you an accurate estimate of how many calories you can expect to burn while doing side crutches and other activities. Activities with higher MET values tend to burn more calories.
What is a MET Value?
MET means metabolic equivalent of task, and these MET values allow us to give you an accurate picture of how many calories you can expect to burn while doing side crunches.
In other words, a MET value is the ratio between the working metabolic rate and the resting metabolic rate , which is the rate of energy that is used relative to the duration of time spent doing exercises like side crunches.
This means that a MET value of 1 is the equivalent of the amount of energy you expend while at rest, and a MET value of 3 means you are expending 3 times as much energy compared to being at rest, for example.
Some activities like hockey come with varying levels of intensity and have different MET values assigned to them. However, the side crunch has a single MET value of 2.9.
The formula that our side crunch calculator uses to determine the number of calories burned per minute is (body weight in Kg x MET x 3.5) ÷ 200.
A person weighing 180 pounds will burn approximately 246 calories per hour from doing side crunches. This activity has a MET of 2.9, which means that it burns almost 3 times as many calories compared to being at rest.
This is what the formula for calculating the calories burned while doing side crunches will look like for a 180-pound individual at a MET value of 2.9.
- Calories burned (per minute) = (body weight in kg x MET x 3.5) ÷ 200
- Calories burned (per minute) = ( 81.6 x 2.9 x 3.5 ) ÷ 200
- Calories burned (per minute) = 4.1 calories x 60
- Calories burned (per hour) = 246 calories per hour
How to do Side Crunches
- To start, lie face-up on the floor or on an exercise mat with the knees bent and your feet touching the floor.
- Keeping your upper body still, lower both of your legs to the floor so they form a 90-degree angle. The knees and feet should both be stacked with the left knee on the floor and the right knee stacked on top.
- Next, place your right hand behind your ear and place your left hand on the floor to help stabilize your body.
- Your chin should remain tucked throughout the entire exercise. Your ribs should be down and your pelvis should be slightly tucked, and you should begin all repetitions from this starting position.
- Keeping your lower body still, begin the upward movement by squeezing your right oblique. Curl your shoulders off the floor while squeezing your oblique to perform a side bend, moving your right elbow toward your right hip. Pause at the top of the movement.
- Slowly lower to the starting position while maintaining tension in your oblique.
- Repeat for your desired number of repetitions before switching from your left side to your right side.
Benefits of Side Crunches
Side crunches have some of the same benefits as normal crunches while also some added benefits that the standard crunch doesn’t provide. Below are the top benefits that you’ll get from doing side crunches consistently.
Strengthening your obliques. Other core exercises like the regular crunch and sit-up primarily target the front abdominal muscles like the rectus abdominis. Side crunches work by targeting your internal and external obliques on the sides of your body.
Side crunches help to develop a toned physique. Since side crunches burn calories, you can expect to lose body fat around your midsection as well as see a more toned physique in other areas like your glutes and lower back muscles.
Versatile ab workout. Once you have the form mastered, you can use variations of the side crunch to create a versatile ab workout that targets additional areas of the body.
Say goodbye to the love handles. The love handles are the areas of fat that you may find on the sides of your lower back. If you struggle with love handles, doing side crunches that target your obliques will help to get rid of them over time.
Tips and Technique
As with any exercise, you need to have the proper form of the side crunch mastered before you try to move on to more advanced variations. Without the proper side crunch form, you risk getting injured which can set you back and have you lose progress in the gym.
Below are the top tips you should know before doing the side crunch:
- Be sure that you’re not pulling on your head. You should use a light touch of the hand behind the ear to prevent any strains on the neck or traps.
- If the move feels too difficult at first, you can modify it by not lifting the legs. Instead, focus on lifting your head and torso by engaging your obliques. As this becomes easier, you can add the top leg and keep your bottom leg stationary and glued to the ground.
- Make sure you’re breathing. You may find that you start to hold your breath while doing side crunches, but you need to make sure that you’re inhaling and exhaling normally.
- Keep your shoulders and hips facing forward if you’re looking to add more tension in the lateral portion of the obliques.
Side Crunch Variations
Another great part about doing side crunches is that there are plenty of different variations you can try if things become too easy or too difficult. Below are the best variations of the side crunch that you can try:
Oblique crossover crunch
This is another side ab crunch that you can try if you think the normal side crunch is becoming too easy.
To do the oblique crossover crunch, you should lie flat on your back with the front side of your body facing the ceiling. Next, you cross your left leg over your right thigh and rest your right hand on the side of your right temple or back of your head.
Then you rest your left hand on the middle of your stomach and begin to tense your abs and crunch across your body so your right elbow touches the inner left knee. You should pause once your elbow makes contact with your knee, and squeeze your abs as hard as possible.
Slowly lower yourself back down and return to the starting position and repeat for 8 to 12 reps.
The oblique V-up targets the side flexion of the obliques and is especially good for eliminating your love handles.
To do this exercise, you should lie on your right side with your legs straight and your feet stacked. Extend your right arm in front of your chest with your palm down. Then place your left fingertips behind your left ear.
Once you are in the starting position, you’ll keep your core embraced and legs straight as you raise your torso and legs off the ground simultaneously and bring them toward one another. The body should then form an angled V shape.
If this is too difficult, you can modify the exercise by keeping your legs on the ground and only elevating your torso.
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The Bottom Line
Side crunches are a great exercise that helps to target and strengthen the obliques. If you think you may have some extra weight around your lower back, side crunches may be a great exercise for you to incorporate into your routine.
If things start to get a little too easy with regular side crunches, you can try one of the variations we’ve explained here for a more challenging oblique workout.
Be sure to use this calculator to find out how many calories you’ll burn doing side crunches and check out all the other calculators that we have to offer at Fitness Volt!
- Jetté, M., Sidney, K., & Blümchen, G. (1990). Metabolic equivalents (METS) in exercise testing, exercise prescription, and evaluation of functional capacity. Clinical cardiology, 13(8), 555–565. https://doi.org/10.1002/clc.4960130809