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Core Power: Strengthening Your Core

You've heard fitness professionals talk about the 'core' and everyone seems to be trying to achieve a stronger core. But what is the core and how can training it benefit you?

Before we go any further, I'd like to briefly explain what the core actually is. The core is your torso and involves the muscles of your abdominals and lower back. Just about every physical movement you make would involve some form of core movement or activation. For this reason, it is important to strengthen your core, whether your goal is fitness, weight loss or muscle development.

Here is a list of the major muscles that make up your 'core':

  • The TVA or Transverse Abdominis: This muscle is the deepest of the abs and wraps around your spine providing it with strength and stability.

  • Rectus Abdominis: This muscle is closest to the surface of the core and is responsible for the development of 'abs'. Despite the "blocks" or "packs" that abs eventually resemble, the Rectus abdominis is actually one long muscle that runs all the way in front of the abdomen.

  • External Obliques: The external obliques are located on the sides of your torso and are more towards the front of your abdomen.

  • Internal Obliques: Much like the external obliques, internal obliques are also situated at the side of your waist and lie beneath the external obliques. Their structure is different as these run in the opposite direction.

  • Erector Spinae: This is a bundle of muscles and tendons that run all the way down your spine.

A strong core can help to keep you more balanced, more supported and because it strengthens the muscles that hold your spine, your chances of lower back pain are reduced. A sure sign of a weak core would be lower back problems, although, it may not necessarily be the case.

Author: Dimi Ingle.
Copyright: Remedium. This article may not be copied, in whole or in part, without the written consent of Remedium.

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