In a culture that’s obsessed with washboard abs, you would expect the average individual to understand the importance of a strong core, but other than helping you look your best, what are the benefits of having one? We have countless late night infomercials that sell the latest, greatest piece of equipment or workout routine that promises to burn belly fat and improve core strength. Even the term itself, “core,” suggests its central importance to your body and health.
Still, the core is an area that is often neglected or underserved in a workout routine. Here are five reasons that you should include more core exercises in your workout routine:
Whether you’re a competitive athlete or like to stay active playing your local rec leagues, core strength is key to nearly every sport.
A strong core will help stabilize your body, giving you more power when performing twisting or torqueing motions such as swinging a golf club, baseball bat or taking a slap shot. A strong core improves balance and helps your breathing by ensuring your diaphragm is in proper position.
While this may not be as self-evident as the previous example, what’s good for you when you are exerting yourself fully is also beneficial for more mundane activities. A strong core can help with everyday activities such a mopping, mowing the lawn, lifting that heavy box onto the top shelf or even vigorous scrubbing.
Our society loves to slouch. Whether it be at the office or sitting on the couch at home, we are inundated with poor posture. Working your core can help reflexively train you to improve your posture and reduce the risk of back injuries such as herniated discs and vertebrae degeneration.
As your posture and overall back health improves, the back pain you experience in your daily life will, too. A strong core can help properly support your spine and alleviate both chronic and acute back pain. In some cases the effect of increasing core strength has been so strong it has even eliminated the need for surgery.
Granted, having those washboard abs you see on TV is just as much about your diet as your core strength, but when you are toned enough to show some abs during your next trip to the beach it will be far more impressive if there is actually abs to show!
No matter what your age or goals, core exercises are a vital part of any physical fitness routine. A strong core can help improve your overall health and fitness while improving self-esteem and quality of life.