5 Benefits You Can Get Out of a Strong Core

Posted on Mar 7, 2017

We may not always be aware of it, but every movement you make can actually be traced back to your core. The name itself should give you an idea of how important it is in terms of movement. It is basically the center, or most essential part. But why is it that fitness experts always harp about developing that area? Isn’t it enough that we have one? What difference does it make if we work on keeping it stronger?

To appreciate it better, let’s go through the various benefits that comes with maintaining a good core.

Benefits of a Strong Core

Improved daily movements

Twisting your body to look at someone calling you from behind, bending over to scoop up your toddler, or simply standing straight seem like mundane acts, but all these rely on your core.

When our core is functioning well enough to support us, we easily take for granted that level of comfort and ease in performing this organic movements. You don’t know what you’ve got, ’til it’s gone, right? Inevitably, the problem becomes apparent when we gradually lose muscle mass caused by aging or the lack of exercise. This eventually leads us to experience some aches and pains in the form of neck strains or back pains. But when you develop a good core you gear your body  to assume better body mechanics because strengthening that specific muscle group allows it to support your body better.

Better Job Performance

According to the Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) Institute there is an estimated $3.5 billion economic loss a year in Singapore due to work-related musculoskeletal disorders. One of these ergonomic problems is back pain. Lifting, pulling, or twisting all draw strength from your core, in fact, even sitting at your desk for hours also engage these muscles.

Bad posture causes your spine to tilt forward creating an exaggerated curve. A strong core improves your posture by distributing the weight evenly. It can also improve body mechanics to help you perform different tasks or assume different positions better. Just like an internal girdle, a strong core allows you to have a strong base from which you draw strength to perform different motions. For instance, when carrying something heavy, a good core will help you distribute your strength better to prevent undue strain on your back or neck muscles.

In the same vein,  the improvement in your posture will also prove to be beneficial in sports or fitness. Good core stability also protects the spin and surrounding musculature from any injury that may be caused by static or dynamic movements. It also produce and transfer force more effectively and efficiently.

Baby Got a Good Back

Among the most common age-related pains in Singapore are those that arise from the back. A lot of people suffer from this chronic pain, sometimes to that point where it can be debilitating.  A strong core will prevent you from being among those in that sad statistic, and you can achieve it through exercises that promote resilient core muscles. A strong back and abdominal muscles can relieve most types of back pain that stems from soft tissue injury or back muscle strain. Good exercises to try include, swimming, aerobic exercises, pelvic tilts, wall sits, and Pilates.

Breathing Better

Developing your core goes along with breathing training. Due to their anatomical location, your breathing muscles, develop as you boost core strength. There are also studies which show that diaphragmatic breathing also play a role in core stabilization, particularly during resistance training exercises. This stacks the body better, with your organs and diaphragm in a better position, making it easier for you to breathe.

Steady Balance

Sports, old age, and even your everyday movements requires balance if you want to avoid injuries. Your core stabilizes your body allowing you to move freely without easily toppling over. Core training improves the balance of the lumbar-pelvic-hip complex correcting postural alignments and increased balance of the whole body. Consequently, it improves your center of gravity.

How Does Pilates Improve Core Strength?

Pilates is considered a good option for developing core strength. Joseph Pilates developed these series of exercise to focus on the powerhouse since it is the physical center of the body. It includes the lower back, abdomen, and pelvis. Through Pilates, instructors will teach you techniques and precise exercises that targets specific areas with emphasis on strengthening your core muscles.

Pilates lessons come in two basic forms, mat-based sessions and equipment-based sessions. As the more popular option, mat-based Pilates is performed on the floor with the use of your own body weight and gravity to create resistance. The latter uses a myriad of exercises with the use of equipment developed by the founder himself to trigger muscle resistance.

The transverse abdominis, which is that muscles that wraps horizontally around the sides of your torso between the lower ribs and pelvis, is tightened to promote that “girdle of strength”. This action stabilizes the lumbar spine and pelvis. Simultaneously, the pelvic floor also acts as support for the torso, pelvis and internal organs while you perform the exercise.

What sets Pilate apart from other types of exercise is that it renders a holistic approach. It hinges on the principle of body conditioning to create a balanced body, mind and spirit. Ultimately, all the physical change and benefits that you can get out of this exercise emanates right at the core, and you also continue to develop that as you go further.

See if Pilates is for you by joining a session with us today, or you may grab our $60 promo where you can already get 3 sessions! Get right to the core with our highly trained and experienced instructors!

Photo credit: Saundi Wilson Photography via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA