In our office, we love to support the adjustments with exercise, stretching and helpful advice on how to go about our daily activities while causing the least harm possible. We find core strength is one key element that helps almost everyone prevent injury. The best core exercise is used to gain functional strength, support good posture and prevent injury. It will strengthen the spine and frame of the body. Having a strong “core” can prevent injury when bending or lifting and helps maintain the proper curvature of the lower spine. Core exercises are among the top exercises prescribed by chiropractors for their injury reducing effect. Having a strong abdominal core not only helps prevent injury but can help gain a nice belly profile.
There are many core exercises. Certainly too many to mention in a single article. The abdominal crunch is a typical example of a highly recommended core exercise. In my opinion though, the best single core exercise is the “abdominal hollowing” exercise. This is a simple exercise and one of the best things about it is that it can be done almost anywhere and anytime. It actually strengthens deeper muscles than crunches. Gain strength and look good at the beach. Follow the instructions below:
- The abdominal hollowing exercise is an isometric exercise. In other words, you use your own muscle contraction as the resistance.
- Begin by drawing the belly button straight back inwards towards the spine.
- Continue by lifting the belly upwards. you may feel the engagement of different sections of the abdominal muscles. Squeeze. This is an exaggerated version of simply holding your belly “in” in order to look skinny.
- Hold and repeat.
- Since you use your own muscles as resistance, it is difficult to over do this exercise, it is pretty much self limiting. As you get tired, relax and repeat the exercise as often throughout the day as you wish. You should not feel any pain with this exercise, if you do you might want to get a medical exam!
This exercise can be done anywhere, even while standing in line at a grocery store,while walking or performing other exercises. With exercise, persistence and repetition are key. Commit to this core exercise daily for two weeks and see how much more stable and strong you feel at your core. You may actually may look more buff too.
If you would like more information on core exercise, back strengthening and flexibility, you may contact our office. Feel free to post your questions or comments. You may email Dr. whittington with your questions also.