Do you know what muscles make up your core? Most people immediately think abs, but your core is actually made up of over 17 muscles in you abdominals, pelvis, back, and gluteus (some people also include the chest muscles).
What does your core really do for you? After supporting the weight of your upper body, the two most important roles of your core are the protection of your inner organs and central nervous system. Think of your abs like a corset that holds in all of your organs, if its strong and tight all of your organs are held in where they are supposed to be and can work properly, but a weak or lose corset would mean that your organs would spill out and sit wherever (not good). Strong back muscles will support your spine thus protecting the fragile nerves of your spinal cord from damage. Having a strong core is also important for good balance, stability, flexibility and makes it easier to do every physical activity from bending down to tie your shoes to swinging a golf club. Not to mention that a strong core will help prevent injury, banish back pain and give you a strong confident posture.
So what do you need to do? Start to include exercises like these into your daily routine: plank, side plank, Russian twist, bridge, superman, quadruped, lunges, dead lifts, basic push up and crunch, squats, etc. Make sure that you are strengthening in all planes of motion – front to back, side to side, and rotation - by choosing an exercise that will strengthen each of these motions. Combining three exercises, one for each plane of motion, would be a great start to an all around strong core.
Having a strong core can make a huge difference in every aspect of your life, so take charge and keep it strong!
Will you join me and commit to doing a plank a day?