You’ve heard about core strength before - but do you know why it’s so important? Your core is your foundation… how we move stems from how stable we are in our core, everything builds on from here. Building your core stabilization will help you reach your goals more efficiently and safely. After all, you are only as strong as you are stable….a weakness in your core stabilizing muscles leads to inefficient movements which may lead to injury.
Here are 6 moves that will help you build 360° of core strength. They are variations of yoga poses! We’re a circle, so when we think of core strength, we have to think front (anterior), back (posterior) and sides (lateral) of core.
Forearm plank: Come into forearm plank, palms up. Pull your front ribs away from your shirt. Once you are steady, raise your forearms off the mat - this will make your anterior core work more as a stabilizer. Hold for 3- 5 breaths.
Scissor Legs: Come onto your back. Bring the right leg up to the ceiling. Curl the head and chest off the mat, reaching your arms straight forward and hover the left leg off the floor. Hold for 3-5 breaths before switching sides.
½ Way Lift: Instead of coming up until your shoulders are at the height of your hips, raise the shoulders a little higher and take your hands off your legs. This will engage your posterior core muscles - your back!
1 arm, 1 leg Plank: From 1 leg down dog, rock forward to 1 leg plank. Raise and reach the opposite arm. Hold and balance for 3 breaths. Come back to plank, press back to down dog and repeat on the second side.
High Lunge Twist w/ hover: From a High Lunge (right leg forward), reach both arms up and against imagined resistance pull down like you’re doing a pull up. Keep that and using your rotational core muscles, rotate towards the front knee (you’re not going far) and hover your left elbow above your right knee. Then with control, extend both arms straight, keeping that bottom hand hovering just above the ground. To come out, press through your feet to come upright and then come back to center. Repeat on the second side.
Side Plank with overhead reach: From forearm plank, shift the right forearm in towards the center of your mat about 45°. Turn so you’re on the outside edge of that right foot, stacking the hips and shoulders. Lift the top hip up as you reach the top arm over your ear. Keep the head back and the hips slightly forward. Hold for 3-5 breaths before coming back to forearm plank and repeating on the second side.
Working on your core stabilization consistently will improve your core strength and in turn help with everything else you do in your life, whether it be carrying groceries, lifting kids or training for an athletic endeavor. If you’re looking for more help with this type of training, please reach out. We’ll schedule a time when we can discuss your goals and needs and get you on your own personal training routine!
If you try these moves out, let me know how it goes or if you have any questions. For more articles about core strength check out, 4 Exercises to build Core Strength and 5 Exercises to build Glute Strength.
As always, this is for educational purposes only. This content is of my own personal opinion and based on my experience and knowledge at this time. There’s always more to learn and consider - not all exercises work for everyone so please honor and respect your body and your level of training and do what is best for you.