​1. Perform continuous movements with the same leg to add more intensity.

2. Push your arms in front of you to engage upper body muscles.

3. Add a jump with each donkey kick to add an aerobic effect.

4. Perform jumping crunches with both legs together, then alternate your legs as you kick back. 

5. Reverse the movement. Start with a donkey kickback and then crunch.


1. Strengthens the muscles in the legs and abdominal region.

2. Improves balance.

3. Increases hip mobility.

4. Low-impact exercise that is easy on joints.​

5. Improves coordination


How to Perform


This movement is a combination of two exercises: standing crunches and standing donkey kicks.


​Starting Position:


Stand straight with your feet shoulder-width apart. Put your hands down by your sides in a neutral position. Relax your shoulders and open your hands. Water depth should be at about your chest level. 




While standing, first do a crunch by bending one knee up to your chest level. Then kick the same leg back as you lean forward, and bring your arms in front of you to achieve proper balance. Repeat the same movement with your other leg. 




Inhale as you bring your leg down. Exhale as you crunch and kick. 




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aqua exercise animation of combined exercises
Character performing aqua Pilates movements

Muscles Worked

Your abdominal and gluteal muscles are the primary movers. Your quadriceps, deltoid and upper back muscles are also engaged

underwater view of a character performing standing crunches
Character performing aqua Pilates movements
25 December 2022

Standing Crunches to Donkey Kicks

​This is a great exercise combination that helps strengthen your core and leg muscles. It is easy to perform and does not require much effort. Because the movement is performed while standing, it is excellent for those who are not comfortable with deep water workouts. 


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