I’m sure you must have heard the word „CORE” before, so if you don’t really know what exactly does it mean, I’ll explain it to you.
„CORE” refers to the mid part of your body, that’s located somewhere around the center of gravity, and is basically represented by the abdominal and lower back muscles. The muscles of the body (CORE muscles) link the upper part of your body to your lower part. Strong abs, and just as strong body muscles, are essential when it comes to our daily activities (maintaining a good posture, carrying your gym backpack, etc.)
What Are The Torso Muscles ?
The anterior part:
Rectus abdominis muscle – is a long muscle that extends along the abdomen, in the middle section of the torso, and which helps bending the torso.
External obliques muscle – are located on the lateral parts and in front of the abdomen, around the waist, and they help twisting the torso.
Internal obliques muscle – are located under the external obliques, and they also help twisting the torso
Transverse muscles – are the deepest muscles located around the abdomen that act like a corset, by protecting the organs and stabilizing the spine.
Psoas iliac muscle – two muscle groups originating from within the pelvis and the joint between the vertebrae; together they act along the femur and hold an important role in bending the hip.
Rhomboid muscles – are located in the lower part of the cervical regions and in the upper part of the dorsal region, and their role is to bring the scapula close to the spine.
Latissimus dorsi muscle – is the most important muscle of the back – its roles are: adduction movement, lowering the shoulders, waving the arms and pulling them in front and overhead.
Spinal elector muscles – are a group of three muscles that extend along the spine and the rib cage, from the lower part of the back until the neck, acting whenever the back is in extension.
Multifidus muscle – smaller muscles, located along the spine, they have short fiber and connect one vertebra to another.
Quadratus lumborum – strings of muscles that connect the pelvis edge to the ribs and vertebrae in the lower part of the back; they help with the lateral movements of the trunk.
How Do The Trunk Muscles Help Us?
From my point of view, the CORE is the most important part of the body. As the translation of the word „CORE” implies, it is the center of gravity of the body and the place where all the movements come from. Let me just give you a few concrete examples as to why do we need a strong CORE:
- When it comes to running, either speeding or endurance, we need strong CORE muscles.
- When length or height jumping (long jump, Plyo Box jumps).
- Whenever we throw or catch something (throwing the medicine ball or shot put ).
- Whenever climbing (mountain climbing).
- Whenever pulling or pushing another force ( elcometer pull-ups or chest press).
- There are many other examples, but what matters is that we understand that almost everything we do or execute is done using the trunk muscles.
Studies have shown that athletes with a higher trunk muscle stability have a lower risk of injury, and this also helps towards increasing their performance.
How Do We Train The Truck Muscles?
The best way to workout our trunk muscles is to involve them in almost all the moves that we make, and to perform functional exercises that work more muscles.
Besides these functional workouts, we have to perform isometric exercises as well (“Plank” for instance), by means of which we can train our stabilizer muscles.
These isometric exercises are very important, as they increase muscle strength and help towards the secretion of the synovial liquid (the vital liquid of joints).
They are also easy to make (you have to maintain a certain position for a certain amount of time), you can make them anywhere, not only at the gym (at home, in the park, stadium, on the beach, at the mountains, etc.) and you can make them anytime (during the morning or evening, after strength/functional training, or even during training).
And now, please note some advices, to help you with your workouts :
- try starting with the easy exercises, then move on to the ones that are a little more difficult
- try to maintain one position for as long as you can
- if you manage to maintain the position for 1 minute, never reduce your execution time
- try to increase the position maintaining time with 5-10 seconds each time.
- If you have any questions or concerns, please leave a comment and I’ll gladly answer it. Good luck!
Don’t leave a day go by without exercising!
PS: in the video below you will see me perform this core workout, which also includes some great ab workouts.