EXERCISE - CORE STABILITY
The “Core” refers to your mid-section [lower
abs, upper abs, obliques and lower back]. It is the
core that coordinates all the movements of the other
two major regions: the upper body and lower body. Imagine
your body as three links in a chain... the upper body,
the core and the lower body.
Core strength training is a major focus in pilates
and yoga exercises. It uses high tension techniques
to train your body to function as one complete unit.
This will translate into greater overall performance
You cannot develop core strength using machines; use
of machines eliminates the adaptive stress for the stabilizer
muscles in the body. These stabilizer muscles give stability
to the core and permit the extremities, to exert force.
Lack of core muscle strength will prevent the movement.
Core strength training uses a variety of exercises,
stresses and resistance. They can be incorporated into
many other exercises; thereby training the body to function
as one complete unit. You should look at every exercise
you do as core strength training! This is martial arts
The essence of core stability training is quality of
movement and relaxation.
The Core Muscle Group
The “Core” refers to those deep trunk
muscles, which stabilise the lumbar [lower] spine. They
- Transversus Abdominis (TA)
- Multifidus (MF)
- Internal Oblique (IO)
- Pelvic Floor
The co-contraction of these muscles produce forces
which stabilise the lumbar spine, and act directly to
resist forces acting on the lumbar spine.
These deep-trunk stabiliser muscles are not involved
in producing movements, but instead involve static,
or isometric contractions. They are employed continuously
throughout everyday activities as well as fitness and
sport activities, and so require very good endurance
of low-level forces. They do not need to be very strong,
but they must be correctly co-ordinated and capable
of working continuously.
Core Stability Training Program
The training protocol for improving the function of
the deep-trunk muscles is very specific, and takes into
account the type of contraction, the muscle fibre type
and the anatomical position required.
By co-ordinating the training over all the muscles
we aim to encourage these stabiliser muscles to hold
the lumbar spine in the neutral position, allowing for
natural curvature of the spine.
Stage One - Hollowing
Stage Two – Static
Stage Three – Dynamic
Pilates is a total body strengthening program designed
around the core and is suited to all age groups and
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Core Secrets claimes to "get results in as little
as 25 minutes, 3 times per week – saving the time and
money you’ll spend at a conventional gym. The 1-2-3
Core program is designed to stimulate your body's metabolism,
facilitating healthy weight loss. The Fitness Ball's
round, mobile surface forces the core muscles to work
harder to maintain balance".
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NEXT: Core Exercise Program
- Stage 1
Exercise Index | Benefits
| Body Type | Guidelines
| Personality | Aerobic
| Anaerobic | Compound
| Fat Burning | Body Shaping
| The Core | Weight Training
| Stretching | Troubleshooting