By Dr Ranjana Arora , Physiotherapy
Core strength is an area that people often tend to neglect; the core is a very important part of the body that is involved in almost every activity that you do. Some often confuse the core with abdominal training, so an understanding of the core is required before delving into the exercises. The core muscles in the body consist of the quadriceps, hips, lower back and the abdominal muscles. These muscles work together to provide a solid foundation for the body and stabilize it.
Lack of core strength can result in posture problems such as stooping and increased risk of injuries while lifting heavy weights. Fortunately, there are various methods by which you can improve core strength without using any fancy equipment. Bodyweight exercises are a great way to improve core strength, you can do them anywhere, and all you need is some space and a mat.
The various bodyweight exercises to crunch your core are:
- Plank: The plank is the best exercise to train the core as in addition to training the core muscles, the shoulders and the back are also worked. It is an isometric exercise where you hold the pose for a certain period of time. To begin, get down in a push up position and then lower your forearms to the floor, contract your abs and hold your body in a straight line.
- Bridge: The bridge is another exercise that works the core, especially the hips and the hamstrings. To do the exercise, lie on the floor with your arms close to your sides. Raise your hips with just the feet, upper back, head and the arms on the floor; hold this position.
- Dead bugs: A relatively easy exercise to start with; in this, you begin by straightening your arms towards the ceiling. Slowly lift the feet and bend your knees at 90 degrees and hold. Lower the right arm to the floor above your head and extend the left leg and then alternate with the left arm and the right leg.