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Getting to the Core of It

Article Submitted By: Gregg Williams – Sports Performance Specialist (SPS)

Since the late 90’s, the “buzz word” for the fitness industry was core. You could turn on any TV infomercial and see the latest gadget that would get your “abs” in the sop shape. They claim to melt away the inches and TV consumers would buy in to the concept. Guess what? They still buy into the concept. It became the all in one piece of equipment that would do everything. No insult to the consumer but too much money was and is spent on the gadgets.

So before we get into the myths and misconceptions of core strength, lets first define the “core” to have a better understanding. Webster defines core as the central part of anything. Therefore, anatomically speaking the core would be the muscles in the abdominal, low back, sides, obliques and hips. So a gadget that focuses solely on the rectus abdominus and not all of the muscles would not be true. Our energy and strength starts from the middle section of the body.

Here are a few tips to help the fitness enthusiast and athlete to train the core area appropriately and effectively.

1) Train on your feet (standing). The best exercises are those that force you to use secondary stabilizers.

2) Move objects away from the core for example, standing overhead press or standing single arm curls.

3) Include exercises such as planks and pushup.

Core exercises are truly effective and serve the purpose for overall strength; however there are essentially other movements that work equally effective.