Neglecting your core isn’t doing your body and health any favors. Learn how to strengthen a weak core and increase your balance and stability.
You might remember lots of sit-ups for getting stronger abs. But it’s not just those sit-ups and planks.
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Your core encompasses:
- the traverse abdominis (TVA),
- the erector spinae,
- the obliques, and
- your lower lats.
In simple terms, the muscles of the torso, especially the lower back and abdominal area, which helps with good posture and balance.
Core exercises train the muscles in your pelvis, lower back, hips and abdomen to work in harmony. This leads to better balance, mobility, and stability.
Your core is essential to every day living! This is what we call functional fitness.
So the question that comes up is, “Why are we so focus on our core?”
With our society becoming more sedentary (we sit more than we move), this is constantly weakening our core muscles.
If we live with a weak core, we become less stable and less balanced to do what we want to do (i.e., climbing a set of stairs, running a marathon, picking up a child, fastening a seatbelt, loading and unloading groceries, etc.).
The key is we need to keep our core strong to keep the body’s center of power. It’s the trunk of your strength!
Now that the basics are out of the way, let’s learn how to strengthen a weak core.
The K.I.S.S. ~ Use your bodyweight to gain core strength!
- Mountain Climbers
- Start in a high plank position. Alternating knees drawing up to chest in a running-like motion. Be sure to keep your abs engaged at all times.
- Side Plank with Twist
- In a side plank position (either on your elbow or extended arm with palm on the floor), extend your opposite arm to the ceiling. Rotate through your torso tucking under and then raising back up to the ceiling.
- Alternating Single-Leg V-up
- Lie on the floor, raising up one leg with the opposite arm reaching toward the foot. Lower back to the floor and repeat with the other leg and arm. Be sure to keep your abs engaged at all times.
- Straight Leg Reverse Crunch
- Lie completely flat on the floor. Raise both legs together reaching for the ceiling. Keep the lower back in touch with the floor. Do not let your lower back go. Think of a towel under you back and you are keeping someone from pulling it out.
- Single-Leg Plank with Side Crunch
- Place your body in a side plank position with your arm bent holding your weight. Reach your arm above your head and draw down as you draw your leg inward. Be sure to keep your abs engaged.
- Bear with Alternating Shoulder Touch
- Get onto all fours and raise your knees an inch or two off the ground. Touch your hand to the opposite shoulder while your knees are off the ground.
In each of these exercises, keep your shoulders back and down, core engaged. If you let any of it go, STOP!!! Reset your position and begin again.
It’s not just about getting the repetitions done. Make the mind-muscle connection.
Commit to working on your core daily!!
“A strong core breeds a strong mind! Balance your mind and your body!”
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Cover Art by Jenny Hamson
Photo by Luis Quintero on Unsplash
Music by Mandisa – Overcomer
Song ID: 68209
Song Title: Overcomer
Writer(s): Ben Glover, Chris Stevens, David Garcia
Copyright © 2013 Meaux Mercy (BMI) Moody Producer Music (BMI)
9t One Songs (ASCAP) Ariose Music (ASCAP) Universal Music –
Brentwood Benson Publ. (ASCAP) D Soul Music (ASCAP) (adm. at CapitolCMGPublishing.com) All rights reserved. Used by permission.