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Fantastic Benefits By Strengthening Your Core

You might have heard about strengthening your core muscles, but what exactly are these muscles and why do you need to work on them? Core muscles are those that are in your abs, back and pelvis. Strengthening these muscles is important because having a strong core means that it is easier for you to do most physical activities. It wouldn’t put so much strain on your body to run, bike or climb if you have strong core muscles. Moreover, a strong core also protects you from injury and gives you better flexibility, coordination and balance.
There are many core exercises that you can take up, some with the use of machines, some with simple equipment, while other your can do all by yourself. If you’re a beginner, try to do at least 5 repetitions of each move, gradually increasing to 10-15 reps a set.

Abdominal crunches. This is the first thing that comes to mind when we want to strengthen abdominal muscles. This could be done with legs at a 45 degree angle on the floor, or at a 90 degree angle against a wall. You could support your head by locking your hands behind them, but it is more recommended to place your hands on your chest to avoid strain on the neck. Slowly push your shoulders and head upwards, feeling the strain on the abdominal muscles.

Bridge. Start with your legs at a 45 degree angle, your back raised slightly off the floor and your abdominal muscles tightened. Slowly raise your hips while maintaining the tightness in your abdominal muscles, and hold for a few seconds before going back to your original position.

Double leg abdominal press. This is a very simple exercise that also works to tighten your abdominal muscles. Lay on a flat surface and bring your knees upward at a 90 degree angle. Rest your hand at the top of your knees and then slowly push your knees towards your hands while the hands are applying an opposite force. Hold it for 3 deep breaths before releasing.

Modified plank. Face down on the ground, support yourself using your elbows and your knees. Your upper body should be straight and not curved. Tighten your abdominal muscles and create more resistance by trying to pull your elbows towards your knees and vice versa. They should be straining to move, but they should stay in position.

Side plank. Support your straight body sideways using your forearm. Keep your body straight and hold the position for three deep breaths before switching to the other side. For variation, use your hand instead of the forearm for support, with your other arm pointing straight upward in the other direction. Hold for three deep breaths before moving to the other side.

Superman. This move is called as such because the position looks like you are superman flying through the air while you’re lying face down on the floor. Place a rolled up towel against your hips and one against your face for support and cushioning. Your arms should be extended outwards over your head and your feet should be extended too. For the first move, one arm should be raised off the surface extending outward as much as you can. Hold for 3 breaths and switch to the other arm. For the legs, one leg should be lifted and extended, the hold for three deep breaths. Repeat on the other side.