21 Feb 2018

People have a good reason to be proud of their ripped abs because it’s not easy to achieve. It’s not something you can get after a few sessions of sit-ups and crunches. In fact, it takes a lot of discipline and dedication to work your core. But in the end, all your hard work will be worth it.


However, strong core muscles are more than just for show. Having a six-pack abs may make you feel more confident about hitting the beach but the benefits of core strength go way beyond that.


Importance of Core Strength

Aside from helping you perform your daily tasks with ease, a strong core can also protect you from back injuries. Moreover, it can boost the functions of other body parts, including your upper and lower extremities. Aside from these, a strong core can:


  • Enhance balance

  • Improve stability, breathing, and posture

  • Prevent low back pain

  • Prevent falls and other fall-related injuries

  • Boost sports performance

  • Tone your abs

  • Help in protecting your internal organs


Basically, it can make you feel better all over especially if it inches you closer to your fitness goals.


Tips To Remember While Exercising

  • Breathe deeply and freely.

  • Tighten your core.

  • Increase the intensity and duration gradually (no more than 10% each week). Slowly build up your strength.

  • Wear a wrist brace that’s specifically designed for lifting weights, most especially if you are suffering from wrist pain.

  • Wear a knee brace if you are suffering from knee pain.

  • Use a workout mat for extra comfort.

  • If you have any existing health conditions, get a clearance from your doctor first because some workouts might not be suitable for you.



Exercises You Can Do At Home

Dumbbell Swing

If you don’t have a dumbbell, you can use a water bottle filled with sand. Hold the dumbbell or the bottle with both hands. Bend your hips and knees and put the weight between your legs. Push yourself to a standing position using your hips as you swing your arms to the level of your shoulders. Keep your elbows straight. Go back to the initial position. Do 10-15 reps.

The Classic Crunch

Lie in a supine position and rest your feet against the wall. Position your hips and knees at a 90-degree angle. Lift your shoulders and your head off the mat with your arms crossed over your chest. Hold the position and breathe deeply for three times.


Slowly go back down and repeat. If this is your first time working out, go for five repetitions. You can then increase it to 10-15 once your core is stronger.

The Air Bicycle

Lie flat in a supine position and place your hands on your temple. Start off by lifting your shoulders up and bringing your knees toward your torso so that your lower legs are parallel to the floor.


Then do a cycling motion; move your right leg forward while pulling in the left leg simultaneously. At the same time, bring your right elbow closer to your left knee; as you do this, tighten your core and crunch to the side. Go back to your starting position and do the same on the other side. Repeat for five times each side.

The Bridge

To start, your back and your feet should be flat on the mat (or the floor). Keep your knees bent. Your hands should be on either side of your torso with your palms facing down. Do not tilt your hips and maintain a straight back.


Then, tighten your core and slowly raise your hips to align with your knees and shoulders. Hold it for three seconds before you return to the starting position. Repeat for five times.

The Circle Plank

Start off in a plank position. Keep your palms facing the floor. With your abs tight, pull and bend your right knee in. Do a clockwise motion with your knee and a counter-clockwise. Make sure that your upper body is stationary.


Go back to your starting position and do the same for the other knee. Repeat for five times on each side.

The Dead Bug

Lie in a supine position and extend your arms toward the ceiling. Raise your legs and bend at the knee so it forms a 90-degree angle. Simultaneously lower your left leg and right arm until they’re hovering several inches from the floor.


Return to your starting position and do the same for the other side. Repeat for five times each.


Strengthening your core won’t be easy and the results won’t come overnight. Like everything else that’s related to fitness, there will be bumps in the road and you might find yourself slowly losing motivation. Always keep your eyes on the prize and exercise discipline to reach your goal.


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