I am sure you have heard the buzzword “core training” by now. I hear it everywhere- but what does core training really mean? Unfortunately, many people out there think it is doing hundreds of crunches or sit-ups and calling it a day. In reality, core training is much more than just doing abs. As zigsports.com describes it, the best way to define the “core muscles” is “all muscles which affect the position of the pelvis”. When you think of it this context, you can understand that there are a lot of muscles the make up your “core”. In order to train the core correctly AND effectively, you have to focus on the entire torso area, the muscles surrounding it and work them in all 3 planes of movement (front to back, side to side and rotational). The goals of training your core is to achieve FUNCTIONAL FITNESS- exercising multiple muscles, nerves and joints together to prepare your body for the specific activities of everyday life and sport!
TEST YOUR CORE STRENGTH- Can you do a 2-minute plank?
Experts say that if you can hold a plank for 2 minutes (correctly), you reduce your chance of lower back problems.
These five exercises will focus on and train your true “core” muscles and the entire body in all planes of motion.
Plank: Work up to holding for 2 minutes. Perform 2-3 sets.
Side Plank: Hold for a minute on each side. Perform 2- 3 sets.
Dead Bugs: As you go through the movement, keep you abs drawn in and your lower back pressed on the floor. Do 10 reps per side for 2-3 sets.
Supermans: Do this as a static exercise, holding in the extended position for up to 1 minute. Or perform moving, do 2 sets of 12-15 reps.
Stability Ball Knee Tucks: As you bring your knees to your chest, keep your abs drawn in and don’t round your shoulder blades. Perform 10-12 reps of 2-3 sets.
Medicine Ball Chops: Start with the ball over one shoulder, bend your knees and twist towards the opposite ankle. Perform 10 reps of 2-3 sets on each side.