Portland Personal Trainer | How Important Your Core Muscles Are
When it comes to building a great foundation for fitness, there are two rules:
- Make sure you have a strong base: great lower body strength and endurance
- Make sure you have a strong core: for great balance, stabilization and injury prevention
We are going to focus on the latter one, the CORE Muscles. To sum it up, the muscles in the back, hips, abdominal and all the other small stabilizers in the mid section of the body, can be considered your core muscles. There are more scientific anatomical names for these muscles, but we want to keep this simple and to the point.
Have you ever noticed that when you do a push-up or you have seen someone doing this exercise, sometimes their mid section bows in towards the ground. Sometimes there belly touches the floor and then they finally get their chest to engage. A lot of this action is caused by the individual not engaging their core muscles before starting the exercise, but sometimes, those muscles are just super weak and not conditioned.
Here is a great example: lifting a heavy object from your car trunk into a cart or you are just carrying it. The moment that the object is away from your body, your core muscles are firing on all cylinders, and if that area is super deconditioned, this is when an injury in the lower back region can occur. A great mathematical formula you can use when lifting an object that is out in front of you is to find out the weight of the object and multiply it by the distance to your stomach. For example, if the object weighs 20lbs and the distance when you pick it up is 10 inches away from your midsection, then that is 200lbs that you are placing on your lower back! If your legs, lower back and core muscles are all conditioned, then lifting this object will be no problem, but when it is not, that is when our body's get into trouble.
Before I finish this post, try balancing on one leg and pick an object to look at. The first time around is a little shaky, but keep trying and do both sides of your body. Rest for a second, and then when you attempt it the second time around, suck your stomach in so you can feel your abdominals, the muscles around the ribs and lower back engage, and then balance on one foot. It should be better the second time around. When you engage your midsection muscles (CORE), it helps center your body, it makes it more stable and less prone to injury. Now, combine that with an excellent lower base with strong legs and a lower body, and you are going to be one happy camper.
The Art of Personal Training by Kisar Dhillon107 SE Washington StreetSuite 137Portland, Oregon 97214