Ideal Exercises for Building Core Strength
Core strength is something that a lot of people would love to improve, both men and women alike, as a strong, toned midsection can really have a positive impact on one’s self-confidence. Conversely, a soft midsection can be a signal that a person’s health and fitness is not only off the track, but on the decline.
In this article, we’ll be giving you some tips to help make your core workouts more effective, using proper movements. So, let’s dive in with a list of exercises that’ll help you build a strong, flat core, and lead you toward a happier, healthier life.
1. Plank position.
This is a great, low-intensity workout that can help assess your current core strength and give you a benchmark as you continue to make progress. The plank in an especially versatile workout since you don’t need any equipment, and it can be done virtually anywhere.
This true full-body, explosive (and VERY exhaustive) exercise helps build core strength by hitting almost every major muscle, from head-to-toe.
As a matter of fact, 10 fast-paced burpees are equivalent to a 30-second all-out sprint, making this an ideal exercise to help not only building core strength, but also get your whole body revving, quickly and effectively improving cardiovascular fitness, as well as testing your balance and coordination.
3. Mountain Climbers.
This exercise is similar to a moving plank position. Now, that might not sound too intense, but considering the fact that your core is working overtime just to keep your body stable and straight, every time you lift your foot off of the floor, this can be just as explosive (not to mention DIFFICULT), and will help you build a strong, toned midsection.
Note: Mountain climbers demand proper positions and techniques to avoid injury. Please consult a certified trainer before committing to this.
4. Medicine Ball Slams.
Medicine Ball Slams are a great multi-joint, full-body exercise that focuses on generating power from your core and sending that power from the top of your body to the bottom.
Besides building muscular endurance, working your cardiovascular system, and relieving stress, this is a great way to isolate and target ab muscles, due to the intense nature of the exercise.
It’ll be easier to keep the momentum going if you can settle into a rhythm.
As you advance, you can move up to a heavier ball, increase the repetitions, or both.
5. Russian Twists.
While most full-body exercises out there incorporate a lot of movement, there’s one thing that often gets left out: twisting.
Chances are, you don’t do many movements where you twist your upper or lower body around your spine during your workouts.
Besides strengthening the muscles that you might be missing with regular exercises, the twisting of your abdomen helps strengthen core muscles that often go overlooked. In fact, many variations of the Russian twist are done by a lot of athletes and celebrities for faster fat burn, recommended by their trainers.
BONUS: Swimming is also a great core-strengthening exercise!
Swimming as a regular habit helps tone your muscles while also burning calories, offering improved fat loss and cardiovascular conditioning, not just in your abdomen, but all over your body. After all, many professional swimmers maintain a near-perfect, lean body, with little to no gym time.
Also, it’s a non-impact activity that puts a very little amount of stress on your joints, unlike running, making it a great starter exercise for beginners, and those of more advanced age and/or more sensitive joints.
However, just splashing around playing ‘Marco Polo’ won’t be enough. You’ll have to do certain strokes (such as front crawl, back-stroke, challenging butterfly, etc.). Because your swimming form directly affects the rate in which you’ll burn calories. So, if you’re a complete beginner at swimming with proper techniques, it’s best if you consult your trainer.
With these exercises, proper technique and position is required, to avoid any injuries. And if you’ve never done these exercises, it’s recommended to consult a fitness trainer to make sure that everything is done the right way.
But, you need to keep in mind that exercising alone may not be enough to build an incredibly strong core. You’ll also need a proper and healthy diet, as well as medications, in some cases. It’d be best if you can consult your physician for further help.
P.S.- If you know someone who has a problem with their core strength, share this article with them and help them get their lives back on track.