Why You Should Strengthen Your Core Muscles?

Core Muscles are in the center of the body (Photo by Alora Griffiths on Unsplash)
Core muscles are in the center of the body. (Photo by Alora Griffiths on Unsplash)

Strengthening the core muscles provides many benefits for sportsmen, office workers, individuals who work on their feet, children, and the elderly.

Core strength is not only important for those who engage in physical activity and recreation.


Core Muscles Explained

The core is more than just the abdominals or abs. The muscles on the lower trunk's front side (core) are only one side of the box-shaped core.

The core is the center of the body. The torso, lower back, hips, and stomach are all affected. Stomach muscles are also known as abs. Core exercises teach the core muscles to work together.

That results in improved balance and steadiness, also known as stability. Stability is essential whether on the playing field or participating in regular activities. Most athletics and other physical activities, in fact, rely on strong core muscles.


Benefits of Strong Core

A Strong Core Increases athletic ability (Photo by Alonso Reyes on Unsplash)
A Strong Core Increases athletic ability (Photo by Alonso Reyes on Unsplash)

Here are some benefits:

1) Injury avoidance

Injury prevention is one of the most important advantages of a strong core. These injuries can be caused by simple tasks such as clearing snow, taking out trash, or attempting to reach into the bottom drawer to retrieve a pot that gets rarely used.

A strong core can help in avoiding injuries such as muscle strains, joint torn ligaments, disc protrusions, or even fractured and bruised bones.


2) Relieves Back Pain

Strong core muscles form a support system for the spine. Everyday activities such as housework can lead to back pain if this support structure is unable to meet the demands of such activities. Anyone having weak core muscles, vacuuming, doing the dishes, mowing the lawn, scraping leaves, or even gardening can worsen the back.


3) Athletic Capability

Participating in any recreational sport and having a strong core can help in performing in the best way. Running, jumping, kicking, and dancing all require an energy transfer between the upper and lower body that occurs through the core muscles.

Take, for example, kickboxing. When throwing a jab, a large percentage of the power should come from the lower body. Solid core muscles efficiently transfer from the lower to upper body.


4) Enhanced Stability and Balance

In everyday life, having good stability and balance is essential. Walking down a flight of stairs, changing clothes, or having to walk on slick or icy surfaces all put stability and balance to the test.

With great core strength, anyone can approach all of life's challenges with sturdiness, security, and injury prevention from slipping and falling.


5) Lifting Rate Increases

People lift more in their daily lives than we think, whether it's groceries, kids, pets, or Amazon packages — and not just while working out.

When we lift objects, the core gives the spine rigidity, preventing a tremendous burden on the core muscles, tendons, and discs. Strong core muscles allow lifting items more efficiently, lowering the risk of injury.

Joint at the hips with the knees bent when lifting objects, keeping the core muscles engaged, spine flat, as well as heels planted. Maintain a proper lifting shape by not bending or arching the back.


Exercises to Build Core Muscles

Plank, Russian Twists and Leg raises help in building core muscles (Photo by Conscious Design on Unsplash)
Plank, Russian Twists and Leg raises help in building core muscles (Photo by Conscious Design on Unsplash)

Here're some exercises:

1) Plank

Trying to hold the plank position requires abdominal, back, and core strength and endurance. One of the most effective exercises for core training is the plank.

How to Go About It:

  • Rest the forearms on the ground, with the elbows directly beneath the shoulders, hands forward, and arms parallel.
  • Stretch your legs behind you, and place your toes just on floor. From your shoulders to the heels, the body must form a single straight line
  • Adjust the head so that the neck is neutral, and the gaze is on your hands.
  • Maintain this position.

2) Russian Twist

Russian twists are an excellent way to strengthen the obliques while also warming the spine.

How to Go About It:

  • Sit with the knees bent in front, feet flexed, and heels flat on the floor.
  • Hold the hands to the chest and lean back till the abdominal muscles contract. Add a dumbbell for an added challenge.
  • Twist the torso slowly from right to left. Maintain the core tight (and breathing!) throughout to complete one repetition.

3) Leg Raise

People of all Fitness levels can gain from a Stronger Core (Photo by Luis Vidal on Unsplash)
People of all Fitness levels can gain from a Stronger Core (Photo by Luis Vidal on Unsplash)

This exercise targets the lower abdominal area while also strengthening and lengthening the hip flexors, which are important for core stability and strength. People frequently have tight hip flexors, especially if they sit at a desk all day, so including this exercise will aid in increasing flexibility in that area.

How to Go About It:

  • For extra support, lie face up with your legs extended and hands at the sides or tucked beneath your hips.
  • Slowly raise your legs, keeping them as straight and together as possible, till the soles of your shoes face the ceiling.
  • Slowly lower the legs down again. Allow the feet to hover a few inches above the floor rather than touching it to complete one repetition.
  • Keep the lower back flat on the floor as you perform the move. If you're having difficulty doing so, don't lower the legs as far.

Takeaway

The core is a group of interconnected muscles that includes the back, hip, pelvic, glute, abdominal, and diaphragm. Working on core muscles has numerous benefits, including better posture, balance, and movement, as well as pain management and injury prevention.

Although fitness influencers and experts frequently take center stage when discussing this topic, people of all fitness levels can gain from a stronger core. When beginning a core strengthening routine, keep your body and fitness abilities in mind.

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Edited by Bhargav