Core exercises are simply a series of weight-training exercises designed to strengthen and tone the body’s core muscles. These include the abdominal muscles that comprise the abdominal wall and the surrounding muscles around the waist, including the back muscles.
Core stability exercises work to strengthen these muscles to support the spine and entire body. These exercises train and strengthen the core muscles, specifically the lower back, buttocks, abdominals, and lower spine, to work in conjunction with the other core muscles to create balance and stability in the body.
Types of Core Exercises
If you currently have this fitness goal of reinforcing your core and building abs at the same time, you can experiment with different exercises to achieve this aim. If you’re a busy person and don’t have time to regularly visit the gym, you can either watch online videos or enrol in livestream training courses like those found at Lumos Yoga & Barre and other similar fitness centres.
From such sources, you could try some of the popular core exercises that train your abdominals and help build endurance and strength throughout your whole body. You can even do them from anywhere.
Here are some samples to try:
Planking is done by lying prostrate on the floor with your elbows bent at 45 degrees. Most experts recommend planking over sit-ups or crunches because they say it places less stress on your lower back and hips. This exercise could help tone your legs, thighs, glutes, arms, and abs at the same time.
When executing a plank, make sure your body is in a straight line. It’s also essential to engage your core and hold the position for as long as you can to feel the strain on your body.
Compared to most full-body exercises, you don’t have to hold onto anything for very long to get a good workout by planking. There’s no need for straps, ropes, or anything else that requires heavy pulling and lifting. It’s a low-impact exercise that could be done anywhere with a good surface or flooring.
Burpees could be great cardiovascular and core strengthening exercises for you. The idea is to jump and use your core muscles to carry your body up or forward. One of the recommended variations of burpees involves a combination of three conventional exercises, namely a push-up, plank, and jump squat.
Start by standing with your feet about a hip-width apart and placing your arms at your sides. Bend over and place your palms on the floor in front of your feet. Slowly thrust your body to a high plank position while keeping your core tight. When you’re in the planking position, do one push-up and bring your feet forward by doing a frog hop. Jump with your hands above your head and land on your feet with your knees slightly bent. Repeat the set as many times as you can.
- Chair Dips
Doing chair dips is a great exercise you can perform either at home or in the office. You can also do this exercise during short breaks between office meetings or before going to bed. The routine could be effective when working on your triceps, upper arms, and shoulders. When done correctly, dips could also engage your core muscles.
To try this routine, sit on the edge of a chair and extend your legs with your feet hip-width apart. Your heels should be flat on the floor. Grab the sides of your seat with your hands. Slowly lift yourself while sliding forward. It should be enough until you feel your buttocks are outside your seat’s edge. Next, lower the body until the elbows will be bent into a 90-degree angle. Afterwards, gently push your body until it is chair level without locking your elbows. Repeat as many times as you can.
Lunges tend to improve overall posture and core strength. They help form strong abdominal and hip muscles while giving your lower body a good stretch. You can do this exercise anywhere without using any special equipment.
Start with one foot stepping in front and the other foot behind you. Your feet should be about two to three feet apart. While standing upright, slowly bend your knees as you lower yourself. Make sure your weight is equally distributed on both legs. Your front knee shouldn’t go beyond your front toes. Your back leg should be outstretched but slightly bent. Afterwards, raise your body and do several repetitions before switching to the other leg.
There are many benefits to doing core exercises. Strengthening these core muscles could help improve your overall posture. Most people increase their core strength by performing basic exercises such as lunges, planks, and chair dips. If you want a high-intensity whole body and cardio workout, perform exercises that focus on your core. They could indeed be helpful in strengthening not only your abdominals but also your legs, hips, and back.
But before embarking on any exercise routine, it’s best to consult first with a professional fitness instructor or your physician to avoid muscle injuries.