Stronger Core, Stronger You? Why Core Strength Matters

Monday, November 4, 2019 - 18:16
You may think core strength only matters to professional athletes or supermodels, but studies show that core strength is essential for every movement we perform in our regular day to day lives.  Before you plan your next workout, delve into the science of core strength for motivation.

  1. Functional fitness begins with the core. Sure, Olympic speed skaters need extremely strong cores to help glide across the ice and change direction on a second’s notice, but what about the rest of us? How important is core strength to your day to day movements?  Extremely! Your core muscles are responsible for nearly everything you do, beginning the moment you get out of bed. How you sit in the chair, lifting a grocery bag, and even tying your shoes requires your core muscles to engage. If you spend your workday sitting in a chair, your core muscles are responsible for your posture and ultimately the protection of your back.  If you experience back pain during the workday, improving your core strength may help dramatically.

  2. Balance and fall prevention. Not only are you better able to move through your tasks with a stronger core, but you’re also more likely to stay on your feet as you age.  A strong core can help you maintain your balance on uneven terrain and reduce your risk of falling.  As you age, your balance may decrease and the risk of serious injury from a fall increases.  By maintaining a strong core, you can prepare for the years ahead and reduce your risk of being injured in a fall.

  3. Get Fitter Faster. Can you think of any single workout that doesn’t involve your core?  Probably not.  Whether you enjoy running or swimming, cardio or strength training, all exercises involve your core muscles to some degree.  According to Mayo Clinic, when your core is strong, every other workout becomes easier, allowing you to do more and increase your fitness.

It’s obvious that core strength is important for better functional fitness and health, but how do you increase your core strength?  First, think outside your abs.  When we think of a strong core, we often think of strong, defined abdominal muscles, but your core muscles are far more than just your stomach. Your core muscles actually stretch into your hip and pelvis and the typical crunch or sit-up isn’t enough to fully engage your core muscles.  Adding variation to your existing routine is crucial; for example, modifying a basic plank to incorporate more muscles or adding a hip bridge between sets will increase the number of core muscles you’re hitting in any workout.

If you’re not sure where to begin or you have concerns about staying injury free, working with a personal trainer at FitClub can get you started.  A personal trainer can introduce you to core strengthening moves and help you ensure that you form is correct.  It’s never too late to get started, so grab a mat at FitClub and strengthen that core!