5 Must-Do Core Exercises Every Beginner Must Know

October 21, 2018
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Many beginners think that the core muscles consist of only the abdominal muscles – or the abs – but this isn’t so. Actually, the core muscles consist of several muscle groups including the abs and the inner abdominal muscles, as well as the buttocks (i.e. glutes), hips, pelvic floor muscles, and scapula! Think of the core muscles as the power muscles where power is created to carry out any movement.  

For this reason, crunches, sit-ups and planks aren’t the only exercises that are essential for core muscle development. Here are five of the fundamental exercises that, when performed as part of a wholistic program, will contribute to a stronger, better core.  

Bird Dog

The bird dog exercise improve core stability due to its multi-functional nature – it works as both an anti-rotation and anti-extension exercise, as well as improves the function of the glutes and shoulders. It’s a hybrid between the plank and superman exercise, thus, its suitability for people who want to achieve more during cross-crawl exercises.

Tip: Do 10-second holds, 8 reps per side

Band Anti-Rotation

Many beginners skip the anti-rotation exercises, a mistake since these should be part of anti-extension and anti-lateral flexion exercises; these are, by the way, the three main functions of your abdominal muscles. You can use either resistance bands or a cable machine for the exercises.

Tip: Do 10-second holds, 8 reps per side

Dead Bugs

Like the bird dog, the dead bugs exercise is useful in preparing for cross-crawl exercises, thanks to their core conditioning benefits. It’s also an excellent exercise for the development of core strength and trunk stability.

Tip: 8 reps per side, alternating sides each rep

Clam Shells

While clam shells are relatively easy to perform, these provide big results in strengthening your buttock muscles, the largest muscle group in your body. Your glutes are essential in stabilizing your body, as well as in creating the power necessary for most, if not all, types of athletic movement. You will find, too, that when your glutes aren’t as strong as they should be, you will experience more muscle weakness and imbalance, back pain, and balance issues.  

Tip: 10-second holds, 10 reps per side

Tummy Vacuums

If you have given birth, or you haven’t been physical active in a while, or you sit for prolonged periods every day, you should perfume tummy vacuums. These fairly simple exercises are a must for beginners, too, because these are a powerful core conditioning exercise that will set the stage for more challenging exercises.

Tip: Do 5-second holds, 8 reps

Core training doesn’t have to be complicated although we have to say that it has to be well-rounded instead of just focused on getting the 6-pack abs look.  Ask your personal trainer at 24 Hour Fitness so that you a personalized training program can be developed for you!

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