Prepare yourself for a massive shock: What if we were to say that having a six-pack doesn’t necessarily mean that you have a strong core?
Yes, you’ve read it right. Even if you’re a lucky – and of course hardworking – fitness lover with a six-pack, it doesn’t always mean that your core is strong. The core muscles are a larger area of the body than just the abs.
In this article you’ll learn about all the core muscles, how to strengthen core muscles with core exercises, and the benefits of core training.
What are the core muscles?
Contrary to widely held belief, the core area doesn’t only consist of the abs.
The core muscles are:
- Abdominals (transverse abdominus, rectus abdominus [“the six-pack”], internal and external obliques),
- Lower back,
- Pelvic floor and
- Glute muscles.
So, in order to have a strong core, you have to do workouts that aim to train all of these muscle groups.
The best core exercises
We’ve compiled the best core exercises to do at home that don’t require any equipment, a personal trainer, or a gym membership.
Here are a few of the best core strengthening exercises:
- Plank Hold
- Side Planks
- Russian Twist
- Bicycle Crunch
- Ab Crunch
- Dead Bug
- Leg Raises
- Hip Bridge
- Bird Dog
Do these core exercises for 30 seconds each. You can gradually increase the duration over time.
- Find your neutral spine position during the core exercises. Your core muscles work best when the joints are aligned in a neutral position.
- Core exercises are most effective when combined with consistent full body strength training and cardio.
- You can download Fitness Kompanion for a variety of ab, hip, and full body workouts.
The benefits of core training
The core area is the center of the body. The muscles in this area stabilize the spine, so a strong core will support your body in every movement.
Here are the top benefits of core training:
- Core exercises improve balance and stability.
- Having a strong and stable core helps to prevent back, hip, knee, and neck pain.
- Simple everyday actions become easier, such as bending to put on shoes, lifting a package, turning to look behind you, sitting in a chair, bathing, dressing, or simply standing still.
- The risk of falling and injuries is decreased.
- The load on the spine reduces. Your posture improves, allowing you to breathe deeply.
To sum up
Building strength in the core area is essential for the movement capacity, endurance, and stability of all your body parts. It’s a must not only for avoiding back, neck, or knee pain, but also for general muscle health. Even 15 minutes of daily core exercises will make a great difference to your core strength.
Last Updated on June 21, 2023