There are lots of core exercises out there. You've got crunches, planks, ab machines and dozens of other options. Which ones should you do as a runner? Answering this question becomes easy if you first consider what your core muscles are supposed to do for you when you're running. Once you've identified the responsibilities that these muscles need to fulfill, choosing the right core exercises is a simple matter of picking movements that train your core to do its various jobs more effectively.
Your core muscles have three major duties when you're running:
- Keeps your pelvis and spine properly aligned, and stable in that alignment
- Aids the transfer of forces between the upper body and the legs
- Limits spinal rotation as you run
Let's take a closer look at each of these responsibilities and identify a sample exercise that helps the core perform each more effectively.