A strong and stable core is a vital asset that can significantly affect your posture, balance, and stability to help accomplish everyday activities and even help reduce back pain. A strong core also helps make your other workouts easier to perform. To build a strong core, you need to engage in various core exercises to help build up the muscles in your core. We mean the rectus abdominis( commonly known as abs), transverse abdominis, erector spinae, and the internal and external obliques (the muscles on the sides of your abdomen).
The most effective core exercises to do are the ones that work the entire muscle group at once. Below are the best core exercises to help keep your muscles balanced- which is important for improving performance as well as avoiding injury.
This is a perfect exercise to help strengthen your core. With minimal movement, this exercise helps support your lower body on your forearms with your legs behind you and helps keep your back straight. You should start to hold for a longer time when improving your core strength.
- Start this exercise by resting your forearms on the ground, along with your elbows directly underneath your shoulders and your hands facing forward.
- Extend your legs out behind you and rest your toes on the ground. Your body should form one line from your shoulders to your heels.
- Squeeze your entire core, glutes, and quads to intensify the exercise, and tuck your butt under to keep your lower back straight.
- Position your head such that your neck is in a neutral position and your gaze is on your hands.
- Hold this position.
The reverse crunch helps increase the strength in the low abdominal area, helping to concentrate on this area in a more targeted exercise.
- To start reverse crunch, you start by lying on your back with your knees bent to your chest.
- Lower your feet all the way down to the button slowly
- Also, try and keep your feet elevated slightly off the ground before bringing your knees back up to your chest.
This is an excellent core exercise for connecting your mind and to your core. It is a great core as well as an abs exercise. The connection between your mind and core helps create that deep core muscle strength.
- Lie down facing up together with your arms extended toward the ceiling and your legs in a tabletop position- this is the starting point.
- Then slowly extend your right leg out straight; at the same time, drop your left arm overhead. Keep both some inches from the ground. Squeeze your butt and keep your core engaged the whole time, lower back pressed into the ground.
- Bring your arm and leg back to the starting position.
- Repeat this process on the opposite side, extending your left leg and your right arm.
Supine Toe Tap
This basic Pilates exercise will help engage your core muscles while working your hips, glutes, and legs. The Supine toe-tap also helps place minimal pressure on your spine, which makes it a great option compared to crunches, especially if you have back pain.
- Start this exercise on your back. Lift your legs and bend your knees to 90 degrees. Place your hands at your sides, palms down.
- After that, tighten your core, lower your right foot and gently tap the ground, keeping your left leg still and your back flat.
- Raise your right leg to return to the starting position. Repeat with your left leg.
- Start with 1 set of 8–12 reps.
This amazing core exercise combines a plank with knee movements which makes it a wonderful move for core strength as well as balance.
- You start with a plank with your hands below your shoulders, tighten your core and lift your right knee toward your chest- keeping your back straight and hips down.
- After that, return your right leg to the starting position as you simultaneously lift your left knee toward your chest.
- Continue alternating your legs. Then start with 1 set of 8–12 reps.
Bird Dog Crunch
The Bird Dog crunch could be a perfect and excellent exercise for targeting your lower back. Most core exercises target the abdominal area, but this crunch not only helps your back but also improves stability and balance.
- Starting by kneeling on all fours before raising your right arm out
- At the same time, straighten your left leg out.
- When you’ve done that, then hold before lowering to the ground
- Repeat the process on the other side.