Strengthening the core is paramount for overall physical well-being and functional fitness. The core, encompassing muscles in the abdomen, lower back, and pelvis, serves as the body’s powerhouse, providing stability and support for everyday activities.
Why it is important to build strength in your core
A strong core not only improves posture and reduces the risk of lower back pain but also enhances balance and coordination. Beyond the physical benefits, a robust core is integral to many athletic movements and contributes to better performance in various exercises.
Whether lifting objects, maintaining balance, or engaging in dynamic activities, a strong core acts as a foundational element for overall strength and vitality, underscoring its importance in promoting a healthy and active lifestyle.
Make this workout work for you!
To keep things super simple, I like to do each move 10 times, that includes repeating the exercise on the other side, too.
1. Kneeling Step-Ups: This move may be a bit tricky because you are testing your balance. Start by going into a forward lunge and gently come all the way down to the ground with knee down. Lift the other foot off the ground an inch or two. Come to a standing position and lift the other knee up, if possible. You can delete the knee up if needed. Do each side for 10 repetitions for a total of 20 repetitions.
2. Standing Side Crunches: Bear most of your weight on one leg with the knee slightly bent. With opposite arm up, crunch your side with elbow and knee coming together. Option B: Make the move smaller, don’t worry about touching the elbow and knee.
3. Back Extensions/Pull Downs: I love this one and it doesn’t look like you are doing much, but you will feel it in your lower back. Use a small towel and hold each side, lay on your stomach and keep your toes locked to the ground (don’t lift them up). Put your arms straight out and lift up, then pull the towel towards your face and repeat. It is like a lat pull when you are slightly lifted.
4. Sit-Ups: Good ole’ sit-ups, whatever you like! I enjoy doing a mini V-Up with my legs slightly lifted and I come up in the crunch and touch my shins. Option B: Lift your knees in a tabletop position (90 degrees) and lift your head and shoulders off the ground. Make sure your shoulder blades are coming off the ground and that is the most important part.
5. Bird Dog: In all four positions (knees on ground with hands right underneath the shoulders, gently lift opposite arm and leg out. This move makes you think and which limb to lift, ha! Alternate each side. Again, slow and controlled wins the race, I mean makes each move very effective!