Your core muscles play an essential role in your day to day life. Even the most mundane tasks, such as pushing a grocery cart and putting on shoes, depend on core muscles. Core muscles also have a significant effect on posture, balance, stability, and coordination. Some of the muscles in your back and pelvis are also a part of core muscles.
The Major Core Muscles
- Obliques: These muscles are responsible for the mobility and rotation of our torso. The internal and external oblique muscles help bend our torso.
- Multifidus: These muscles are present in our back and help support our spine.
- Rectus Abdominis: Our body’s bending action is possible due to an abdominal muscle called the rectus abdominis.
- Transverse Abdominis: This muscle is wrapped around the front and side of our torso, and it helps stabilize the pelvis.
- Erector Spinae: This is the back muscle that helps you stand straight and extend your torso
Our body’s overall fitness depends on these muscles. Keeping these muscles strong will ensure a stabilized body.
Diving headfirst into any difficult exercises or techniques is always a bad strategy. You should always begin with simple exercises. This is also beneficial for those who haven’t exercised before or for a while. So let’s start with some beginner moves.
Planks are definitive core exercises. The planks involve maximum effort but minimal movement. While executing a plank, you need to support your body on your toes and forearms while keeping your body in a straight line. In case you get tired, you can make the exercise easier by resting on your knees.
Begin in a forearm plank position with your hands on the ground, elbows below your shoulders, and your feet shoulder-width apart. Tighten your core and hold this potion for at least 30 seconds.
While doing this exercise, you have to lift your hips; this helps activate your glutes. This exercise also helps tone your thighs and butts.
To start, lay on your back, then bend your knees, with your feet hip-width apart on the floor. You can either place your arms to your sides or behind your head. Tighten your glutes and core and slowly raise your hips then slowly let your body fall to the floor. Repeat this process for about 10-15 reps. Take a break and repeat.
These are the most basic yet the most effective core strengthening exercise. Your abdominal muscles also benefit from the act of lifting your upper body. In case you suffer from lower back pains, do this exercise with care, move slowly, and do not exert yourself.
Begin by lying flat on your back with your knees bent and your feet shoulder-width apart on the floor. You can either cross your hands on your shoulders or place them behind your head. Now, try and lift your upper body and touch your head to your knees. Make sure you tighten your core and relax your shoulders and neck. Repeat this motion for 10-15 reps.
Once your body gets adapted to the regular beginner workout sessions, you can now take your workout level and raise it a notch.
This exercise is a combination of plank and knee movements. This is an exercise that is excellent for core strength and core balance.
Start in a plank position, keeping your hands in line with your shoulders and maintaining a tight core. Lift your left knee towards your chest, and make sure to keep your back straight with your hips down. Return your left leg to the original position and repeat the same process with your other leg. Continue doing this while maintaining a relatively quick pace. Begin with a single set at first and gradually increase the amount.
This crunch works your entire upper body. When done properly, this exercise helps work your glutes, core, and quads.
Start in a wide stance with your toes pointed outwards. Place your hands behind your head and push your chest outwards. Bend your knees so that your thighs are parallel to the floor and keep your glutes and core tight. Bend your upper body sideways to your right and touch your right elbow to your right thigh. Now, repeat this process on your left side. Alternate each time and do this for about 15 reps.
This is a classic exercise that strengthens your abs because it creates constant tension in your core muscles.
For this exercise, lay straight on your back with your back, shoulders, and neck aligned. Bend your knees and place your feet on the floor hip-width apart. Bend your left knee towards your chest and extend your right leg straight while simultaneously touching your right elbow to your left knee. Make sure your legs do not touch the ground for the duration of the exercise. Repeat this process while alternating your knees for about 1 minute.
Regular exercise will help strengthen your core muscles quickly. Make sure you maintain your very own pace. Do not be disheartened if you do not see immediate results; all good things take time. Just be consistent with your workout routine.