5 Core Exercises That Increase Stability and Running Efficiency

Stability Ball Squat

  • Complete two sets of 10 reps
  • Progress to three sets of 15 reps

Begin the squat by activating your transverse abdominus to achieve a neutral spine position; maintain this activation throughout the squat. Keep your center of gravity directly over the bones in your rear end, maintaining a neutral spine through the motion. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart and positioned far enough from your body so that your knees remain directly over your ankles in the squat position.

Hip Hikes

  • Complete two sets of six reps on each side
  • Progress to three sets of 12 reps on each side

This glute-strengthening exercise targets the muscle in a similar way as the clam shells, but it's a single-leg stance where posture plays a more important role. Maintain a neutral spine. If you feel the burn on the outside of the hip rather than in the gluteus medius, lean forward just a hair. Start with the glute relaxed and your non-weight-bearing hip below the standing hip. Then, squeezing the glute in your stance leg, allow the non-stance leg's hip to rise above the hip on the stance leg. Hold the position at the top for a five-second count, and return to the starting position.

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