Body Weight Core Exercises
Especially if new to the exercise scene, these isometric and body weight exercises can help establish a strong core and stability.
Planks are an isometric core exercise and can held in different forms. These 20 plank variations can not only improve posture, but engage various muscles in the back, arms, shoulders, glutes, quads, and hamstrings.
To complete a basic bridge, lie on the back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Pushing from your heels, lift glutes off the floor until there is a visibly straight line from the knees to the shoulders. Squeeze glutes and abs and hold for two seconds, releasing slowly to the starting position with the back flat on the floor. Holding the position at the top further engages and contracts the abs and glutes.
Standing wall pushes are a simpler variation to a standard pushup. They require a stabilized core to push the body against the wall while strengthening the upper body. Find how to do effective wall pushes here.
Compared to traditional crunches, v-ups are considered to be advanced but very effective core exercises. Lie down flat on the back with legs straight, lifting them in the air, touching toes with fingertips, and ultimately forming a 'V.' Lay back down for one rep and repeat.
Although yogis recognize the Warrior III as a yoga pose, it is one of the best core exercises. And not only can it strengthen the abdominal muscles, but is suggested to improve balance, memory, and concentration.
Best Core Exercises with Weighted Equipment
Once stability has been established, introducing equipment, such as the medicine ball and kettle bell, can excel and optimize results.
Kettlebell swings are beneficial to both core strength and cardiovascular health, as the repetitive motion is sure to elevate heart rate. Offer greater muscle engagement by performing single-arm swing, grasping the kettlebell with one hand and swinging like the standard swing.
After mastering the one and two-arm kettlebell swings, try tackling the lateral swing. The core exercise is also encouraged to work the shoulders, forearms, hips, and legs.
Although the windmill is considered to be an advanced exercise, tips and progressive movements can lead to effective completion.
Standing Oblique Crunches
Using either a dumbbell or kettlebell, hold weight in left hand and stand straight with feet shoulder-width apart. Keeping the back straight, bend to the left (bending only at the waist) then return to starting position. Complete desired reps then transfer weight to the other hand.
Russian twists can be completed with a medicine ball, dumbbell, or weighted plate. Sitting in a sit-up position, hold the weight straight out and twist the torso from the left to the right.
Kettlebell Renegade Rows
The kettlebell renegade row may be challenging, but it is one of these best core workouts. It is touted to develop upper body strength without access to heavy weights and encouraging greater balance.
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