Why Having a Strong Core is important
Do you know what your ‘core’ is, and what it really does?
I have asked this question to many of my students participating on a Shades of Yoga Teacher Training and I have received a wide variety of answers. Very rarely however, do I receive an answer that is close to the truth. The most common incorrect response I receive is, “Your abdominal muscles”
This is not true, well not fully anyway. While your abdominal muscles do form a part of your ‘core’, there is a lot more involved. Here are just a few of the main muscles included in the ‘core’ group.
Core muscles are
- Rectus and transverse abdominals,
- pelvic floor,
- quadratus lumborum, and
Wow, that is a mouthful! So what does all of this actually mean?
Basically, your ‘core’ is the group of muscles that act in a dynamic way to stabilise your spine and protect it from injury during movement.
Ideally, your ‘core’ wants to act as a stabilizer, and force transfer center, as opposed to a prime movement center. Your ‘core’ muscles transmit force from one part of your body to another, and have a three dimensional depth and functional movement in all three directions (forwards, backwards, sideways). In other words, every movement that you make originates from your ‘core‘, or has an effect on your ‘core’. Your ‘core’ is therefor an integral part in maintaining spinal health, intervertabral disc health, and pain free movement in general.
5 components of core stability
- motor control
Contrary to popular belief then, the best way to train your core is not only through movement, but stability exercises as well. Ideally, a comprehensive mix between these two each time you perform some kind of work-out is what really works on strengthening and stabilising the ‘core’. This is where Yoga comes to the fore.
In Part 2 of our blog series focused on the core, we will discuss exactly why Yoga is so good for training the core…