If you want to improve core strength at home, you might be surprised by what type of exercises yield the best results. Most beginners will focus on moves such as sit ups and ab crunches, but to create a strong core you need to be exercising a wide range of muscles from your lower back up to your shoulders. Strengthening a wider variety of muscles will help to build stability in the pelvis and spine, which will protect the back and enhance a person’s ability to bear load.
The following exercises can be done at home and require no specialist equipment. They are easy to incorporate into your existing fitness regimen. The beauty of being able to do these at home is you don’t have to take the time to go to the gym, and that can help you with your routine.
Front Plank Exercise
The front plank move is one of the most effective ways to get your core strength up, and it is the easiest exercise for a beginner to learn. Keep your spine straight and position yourself so that your forearms and toes are resting on the floor. Maintain this position for a minimum of 10 seconds. As you build up the strength in your back, you may want to increase the amount of time you hold the position for.
To increase the number of muscles which are being given a work out, incorporate arm and leg lifts. Holding the plank position, raise your arm or leg and count to 5. Repeat this 10 times to start with, but increase the number of repetitions as your fitness improves.
Side Plank Exercise
Many people are looking to improve core strength at home because they have been suffering from aches and pains, or have incurred a minor injury. Regular runners, for example, can suffer problems with the muscles in the hips because of overuse. The side plank exercise will strengthen these key muscles and improve hip stability.
Lay on your side, with your elbow resting just underneath your shoulder. Shift your weight so that your forearm is supporting your weight and, holding your body in a rigid position, count to 10. Switch sides so that all muscles are receiving a workout.
The bridge exercise builds strength in the abdominal muscles and will also give the gluteus muscles and hamstrings a good workout. Sports rehab professionals use this exercise to build spinal and core strength in people who have suffered injuries.
To do the bridge, lay with your arms by your side and the soles of your feet on the floor, with your knees slightly raised. Move your feet back so that they are underneath your knees and raise your back off the floor, so that only your feet, shoulders and head are touching the ground. You should aim to hold the bridge position for 30 seconds, but may need to work up to this length of time. Holding the position correctly for a few seconds will do more for your core strength than holding an incorrect stance for 30 seconds.
Strengthening your core will have a lot of benefits for your posture and health. These simple exercises are easy to do in your own home. They will strengthen your core, and you don’t have to go to the gym to do them.