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7 Core Workouts you can Easily do at Home

Fitness


Core Workouts to do at home
When you hear your coach shout “engage the core”, they usually mean “squeeze” all your muscles, as hard as you can but don’t forget to breathe, around your back, hips, neck and the belly.

In complex movements, such as squats, not engaging the core also means not being able to lift the burden or getting injured. In everyday situations, weak core relates to chronic pain and higher risk of injuries.

Core is a group of muscles

Simply explained, core includes the muscles around our belly, back, hips and the neck. More detailed description would include the muscles known as erector spinae, the diaphragm, rectus abdominis, transversus abdominis, multifidus, internal and external obliques and the pelvic floor muscles.

Stability, support, power

Core’s main function, especially emphasized in the fitness industry, is the spine stability. Herniated disks and pinched nerves are a very common injury that can easily be prevented by taking smart decisions when it comes to barbell loading and building a strong foundation: core strength and a proper technique.


Simply said, core’s task is to keep your body stable; not only during the training, but also during the situations such as accidents, sudden falls and crashes.

Core is also often labelled as a source of power; when engaging all core muscles at the right moment, our body has the ability to produce a much greater force. While you move, let’s say squat up from a hole, if you “squeeze” your core, you’ll be able to generate more power and lift the weight, first safer, and second, in a more powerful way.

Strong core will also make sure your posture stays aligned and upright, and make your 8-hour office time, sitting behind a computer, much less painful.

Good stability prevents many of the work, sitting or physical, related health issues such as chronic pain or overuse injuries. Besides the ladder, core muscles also have a role in the continence, pregnancy and holding a breath.

As you see, core workouts and a strong midsection are important.

7 core workouts for better posture and stronger performance

First thing first; no sit ups or crunches. We will keep these highly popular exercises out as they simply don’t belong into our core workouts plan. The following routines are put together in a way you can do them practically anywhere, that includes at home.

Important: keep you core activated/engaged. That said, don’t let the lower back curve into a hyperlordosis; don’t let your pelvic muscles loosen up too much.

Core Workouts at home - Alexandre Jolivet

  1. Quick, no-equipment routine for beginners

If the workout still appears too demanding, scale it. The single, most important goal of the following routine is to keep the core activated; prevent the anterior pelvic tilt.

6 rounds: perform each exercise for 30 seconds:
plank
single leg hip thrust – left leg
single leg hip thrust – right leg
Balance: Stand on the left leg only (hold the right knee with your hands)
Balance: Stand on the left leg only (hold the left knee with your hands)
1 minute break in between the rounds.

  1. Quick, no-equipment routine for advanced athletes

The most important task is to keep your core engaged and your form, especially the lower back, solid.

6 rounds: perform each exercise for 40 seconds:
plank
push ups
single leg hip thrust – left leg
single leg hip thrust – right leg
Balance, try to keep your eyes closed: stand on the left leg (hold the right knee with your hands).
Balance, try to keep your eyes closed: stand on the right leg (hold the left knee with your hands)
1 minute break in between the rounds.

  1. Train your core with a kettlebell

Kettlebells are a convenient piece of equipment that can be used anywhere: outdoors, in the gym, at home, while travelling… This core routine is a must-try:  

6 rounds:
10x Russian swings
10x bend over single arm rows – left arm
10x bend over single arm rows – right arm
(don’t place the other hand on a bench, stabilize the body by engaging the core)
20x side twists (Stand still, bend your knees slightly, hold the kettlebell in front of you. Move the kettlebell left and right while keeping your hips fixed – no movement, hands only).

workouts to strengthen the core - Jessica Vetter

  1. All you need is an elastic band

You have probably been using elastics bands as a pull up or mobility assistance tool. But you can also include them into your core workouts plan. Fix the elastic band on the rack or somewhere solid:

Super set of 2 exercises: perform 5 rounds

10 reps with each arm: plank + pull; while holding a plank, pull the band with your arm from the front (overhead) position all the way to the hips. The second arm supports the plank. Squeeze your core and the glutes to keep your body straight and stable.

To scale the exercise, place your knees on the floor.

Pair the movement with hollow rocks: 15 reps.

  1. “I hate plank” kind of a core workout

Let’s be honest; plank isn’t THE most popular exercise among athletes, or fitness enthusiasts. Luckily there are other options. Here’s one:

4 rounds:
12x one legged deadlift (with or without a weight)
12x one legged deadlift (with or without a weight)
30 sec single leg half bridge hold
30 sec single leg half bridge hold
12x overhead front raises; grab the plate, kettlebell or a heavy object and lift it from the hips to the overhead while keeping the elbows (almost) straight.


  1. Quick routine with a medicine ball

Medicine or slam balls are a great training tool that can also be used at home (preferably outside on the backyard). Make sure you engage the core while slamming the ball down or sideways.

5 rounds:
30 sec ball slams
30 sec one leg deadlift + press: left leg
30 sec one leg deadlift + press: right leg
(medicine ball travels from the floor to overhead)
30 sec side throws: left side
30 sec side throws: right side


  1. Feel the burn

In case you do like planking, here’s a routine that will definitely test how pain resilient are you. If at any time, your plank or push up form breaks down, take a pause and continue after you are once again rested enough to keep your (lower) back straight. 

10 rounds:
30 sec side plank – left side
30 sec side plank – right side
10 Spiderman push ups

Beginners:
10 rounds:
15 sec side plank – left side
15 sec side plank – right side
10 wall-supported push ups (or arms on the bench)

A quick test of how engaged or strong your core is would be to perform a pull up, or a push up. Observe your back; did your feet stay in front, or did they sway backwards?

Picture: Athletico Physical Therapy

Core routines at home - Vrope Fire 2.0
Polona Fonda

Written by Polona Fonda

http://www.fondastrong.com/ Polona has been working in sports media for almost a decade. She is a former editor of the biggest European online magazine on functional fitness with expertise in graphic and interactive communication. Business aside, Polona is also a former competitive alpine skier with a passion for weightlifting, crossfit and outdoor sports.

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