By now, you’ve probably heard that having a “strong core” is important, but if you’re like most people, you may not know exactly what that means, why it’s important or what to do about it. Here’s a quick overview.
FINDING YOUR CORE:
Essentially, your “core” is located in the middle section of your body. While most people think of it as just the abdominal muscles, it actually includes your diaphragm (lower chest), abdomen (belly), mid-lower back, obliques (sides) and lower pelvic muscles. All in all over 25 different muscles make up your core.
WHY YOUR CORE MATTERS:
Your core is where your body’s strength and stability comes from. It is part of a “kinetic chain” that allows the various parts of your body to function correctly and is critical, not just for optimal athletic performance, but also for performing any number of daily activities (e.g., sitting, walking, running, reaching, bending, climbing stairs, etc…). As our bodies age, it becomes increasingly important for avoiding injuries and for maintaining an active life.
ENHANCING YOUR CORE:
When it comes to enhancing your core, it’s important to focus on both muscle strength and muscle endurance. For strengthening, you’ll want to do exercises with greater resistance but fewer repetitions and for endurance you’ll do the opposite – lesser resistance but more repetitions. Here’s a video from Dr. Jason Lemieux of Physiomed Oakville that demonstrates some key exercises for improving your core:
- Easy does it, three times a week is a good start
- Always be mindful of the alignment of your spine
- Use exercises that also strengthen the surrounding muscles
Need help, don’t hesitate to give us a call. Remember, at Physiomed, Healthier Starts Here!