3 Essential Stability Exercises to Strengthen Your Core

3 Essential Stability Exercises to Strengthen Your Core

Developing Core Strength

Engaging Core Exercises:

  • The Bird Dog

  • Supine Toe Taps

  • Single-Legged Deadlift

Core exercises train the muscles in your pelvis, lower back, hips, and abdomen to work together better. Developing core muscles protects the spine, reduces back pain, enhances movement patterns, and improves balance, stability, and posture. Aside from situps and pushups, however, core exercises are often neglected.

Weak core muscles can lead to more fatigue, less endurance, and injuries, as well as giving you poor posture, lower back pain, and an increase in muscle injuries.

Developing Core Strength

While there are many methods and pieces of equipment for developing core strength, there are various exercises that require only bodyweight or basic equipment. The most important thing to remember when training the core is to perform each exercise with awareness so that the core is actually braced or engaged instead of using momentum like some weight training exercises.

Engaging Core Exercises

The following exercises will help strengthen your core and give you different ways to work those muscles other than standard push-ups and sit-ups. Beginner modifications are also noted.

The Bird Dog

Equipment: Dome; none

How to: Position the right knee on the center of the dome and place both hands on the floor underneath the shoulders. Extend the left leg behind you to hip height; keep the foot flexed. Raise the right arm to shoulder height with your thumb facing the ceiling. Hold for 20 seconds. Switch sides. Repeat until fatigued.

Modification: Perform the exercise on the floor without a dome.

Equipment: None

How to: Lie on your back and place your arms by your sides. Engage the abdominals and draw the navel toward your spine. Lift the knees to 90 degrees. On a two-count, lower your right foot to touch the floor, and then on a two-count, return it back to 90 degrees. Perform the same movement with your left leg and continue to alternate tapping the right and then the left foot onto the floor. Perform 10 reps on each leg.

Modification: Keep your feet on the floor, and slide your heel on the floor/mat, alternating legs.

Supine Toe Taps

Single-Legged Deadlift

Equipment: Dumbbells

How to: Hold a set of dumbbells and stand tall with feet hip-distance apart. Lift the right foot off the floor; hinge the pelvis to glide over the top of the left leg. The head and the foot should counterbalance each other. The lowest hanging point should be when the body is parallel to the floor. Keep the pelvis as neutral as possible. Complete 12 repetitions on each leg.

Modification: Perform the exercise without dumbbells or complete a deadlift with both feet on the floor.

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