Popular Core Workouts
There are many core workouts to choose from. Fitness disciplines such as Pilates specialize in a whole series of core-strengthening exercises.
But here are three simple, yet challenging, core-strength exercises from the Mayo Clinic that, if done properly, will keep your core strong and your back from being over-fatigued.
No. 1: Supine Bridge
Prescribed by many physical therapists, this popular workout will not only help strengthen your core, it will also help strengthen your back muscles.
- Lie down on your back.
- Raise up your hips so only your head, shoulders, and feet touch the floor.
- Hold for anywhere between five and 30 seconds.
This exercise is very effective for working the gluteal muscles, which help maintain your pelvis control.
No. 2: Abdominal Crunch on a Stability Ball
This exercise is one of the best and safest ways to work out your abs. (And also a great excuse for sitting on a comfy plastic ball.)
- Sit on the ball and then walk your feet out and away until your hips just come off the ball and your back is on the ball.
- With feet shoulder-width apart, put your hands behind your head and slowly crunch forward until your shoulder blades come off the ball.
- Hold for one second, and slowly lower yourself back to the starting position.
Check it out: Core Strengtheners
This is a highly effective routine for building strong abs while taking excess pressure off the back and spine.
No. 3: Superman
Especially great for the lower back, this core exercise is quite popular due to its simplicity and effectiveness.
- First lie down on your stomach and place a rolled-up towel under your hips for back support.
- Tighten your stomach muscles.
- Now, simply take turns raising each limb up for three seconds.
Check it out: Learn the Superman Exercise
This core exercise is great for anyone looking to strengthen their lower-back muscles.
While strengthening your core muscles may keep your back strong, it is important to understand that some exercises can put too much stress on your back, causing potential injury. As anybody with lower-back pain will tell you, once you acquire a back injury it can be difficult to remedy.
Here are some back safety tips from bigbackpain.com, to help keep your training on track and your back feeling strong.
Tips for Avoiding a Back Injury
- Start slowly and be consistent.
- Make sure to warm up with five minutes of light aerobics.
- Walk! One of the best and easiest ways for keeping your back strong and healthy.
- Don't hold your breath.
Disclaimer: If you have a history of back or neck pain, be sure to consult a physician before beginning a core workout routine of any kind.
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