Core exercises are must for complete physical fitness program. We ignore core muscles a lot as the workout is a little painful.
There are multitudes benefits of having a strong core muscles. These not only help you to provide stability but also help you to develop strength.
So, let’s understand what constitutes the core muscles.
What all comes in Core?
Core is not just the abs but many other muscles. Core consists of all the muscles that make your midsection, including your back and hips. In fact all the muscles apart from legs and hands.
To be more exact:
“Major muscles included are the pelvic floor muscles, transversus abdominis, multifidus, internal and external obliques, rectus abdominis, erector spinae (sacrospinalis) especially the longissimus thoracis, and the diaphragm. Minor core muscles include the latissimus dorsi, gluteus maximus, and trapezius.” Source
Now for the ease, here what various above complex terms constitute.
Transversus abdominisis : It is a muscle layer of the anterior (front side) and lateral (front and side) of abdominal wall.
Multifidus : These are series of muscles that are attached to the spinal column.
Internal and external obliques : The innermost and the outermost flat muscles of the abdomen.
Erector spinae: Muscles that straighten and rotate the back.
Latissimus dorsi: Broadest muscles of the back.
Gluteus maximus : Main muscle of the hip.
What the Core Does
Our core is the foundation we work from. It is the portion that provides us strength and stability. If we lack a solid core muscles, we lack the strength which in turn means loss of power, loss of technique and there is a chance of injury.
You are very prone to shoulder injury, wrist injury, knee injury in case of a weak core.
If you really want to master some of the shoulder or upper body stand, you need a good and effective core.
How core muscles exercise helps
1. Core exercises improve your balance and stability
2. Core exercises tone your abs and hence strengthen them.
3. All the stands (Scorpio or the Crow pose) can be easily done if you have a stronger core and good hands strength.
4.Stronger core muscles help you to avoid injury. You hurt your wrist, knees and shoulder less if you have a good core strength.
What are the exercises to follow to improve the core muscles
If you find it difficult to do crunches, the good news is that there are many other exercises that will help you to build a strong core.
How to perform Bridge Pose
- Lie on your back.
- Bend your knees and place your feet flat on the floor; keep your feet hip distance apart on the floor.
- Now slide your arms beside your body, palms facing down.
- Press your feet onto the floor and with inhale gently lift your lower back, middle back and upper back off the floor
- Press down your arms and shoulders onto the floor to help you lift your chest.
- If you want to lift the torso a little more, try to interlace the fingers and push the hands on the floor.
- Once in the pose, breath normally.
- Hold the posture for a minute or two.
- To come out of the pose, exhale and roll your spine back on the floor.
How to perform Boat Pose
- Lie flat on your back. Body relaxed and feet should be touching each other
- Now inhale slightly raise your arms and legs from the ground
- Exhale and lift your chest and feet off the ground.
- Your thighs should be making an angle of 45 degree with the ground
- Your arms should also be raised and should be stretched towards your feet or parallel to the ground.
- Try to hold this position for 30 seconds. If you are a beginner it will be difficult to hold for this long.
There are some planks exercises also, which you can easily incorporate in your daily schedule. I have already posted about them, check here for details.