Bicycle Crunch

Bicycle Crunches – Martial Arts Strength Exercise

This page looks at the strength training exercise known as Bicycle Crunches. These crunches are a great exercise to build up core strength. They improve rotational power and thus help to generate better martial arts kicking and punching strength.

All stretches and strength exercises should be supervised by a trained martial arts instructor in order to prevent injuries and to ensure the proper technique is utilized. For additional exercises, please visit the main Strength Training section.

Bicycle Crunches – Step-by-Step Instructions

  • Starting Position: Lie on your back with the fingers interlaced, hands on top of the head. Hips, knees, and ankles are flexed at 90 degrees and lower legs are parallel to the ground. The head is off the ground.
  • Bring the left knee toward the chest while flexing and rotating the trunk to the left, attempting to touch the right elbow with the left thigh. As the left knee rises, the right leg extends.
  • Return to the starting position.
  • Bring the right knee toward the chest while flexing and rotating the trunk to the right, attempting to touch the left elbow with the right thigh. As the right knee rises, the left leg extends.
  • Return to the starting position.
  • At the starting position ensure that the hands are on top of the head, not behind the neck.
  • Maintain tightness of the abdominals throughout the exercise.
  • Attempt to fully extend one leg while bringing the knee of the other to the elbow.
  • Do not jerk the neck or arch the back in order to achieve the up position.

Instructional Video for Bicycle Crunches

Reference Sources

  1. Public Domain document, FM 7-22 Army Physical Readiness Training,, Added – 02/01/15