Are you looking for some no-nonsense core exercises to add to your workout routine? Have infomercials selling $8,000 upside down wobble boards got you a little confused about the best way to improve core stability?

We all want that coveted killer six pack, and if you don’t, you’re either a Sumo wrestler or a really bad liar. However, developing the other muscles in your core, yes there ARE more, is extremely important for everyday things like:

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  • Functional Strength
  • Pain-Free Movement
  • Injury Prevention
  • Every Other Exercise Developing Your Body
  • Time Travel – Probably Not Time Travel

A strong, stable core should be your first goal before looking to add the weight of a planet to your squats, deadlifts and bench presses. This will ensure performance and strength are optimal and will protect the spine throughout the movement.

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The 4 Best Exercises for Core Stability

1) Planks

core stabilityPlanks are a great way to train the stabilizers of the core in a safe way without movement or impact.

  • Take a push-up position on the floor with your feet close together
  • Rest your weight on your forearms and your toes
  • Contract your abs, lats, glutes and quads to maintain a nice neutral spinal position
  • Hold the plank for 10 to 60 seconds depending on your ability

2) Bird Dog

The Bird Dog exercise is a step up from the plank and involves training stability through the movement of opposing limbs, beneficial for common activities like walking.

  • Take a quadruped stance on the ground resting with your weight on your hands and knees
  • Raise one arm in front of you while at the same time extending the opposite leg behind you
  • Ensure you keep a nice straight spinal position and try not to rotate at the shoulders or hips as you move your limbs
  • Hold this position for 5 seconds

3) Russian Twist

Stability is not only important for stationary spinal positions; it’s also vital for protecting the spine in rotational movements. (Click here to see this exercise performed)

  • Sit on the ground holding a light weight
  • Bend your legs so that your feet are together flat on the ground
  • Lean back slightly and lift your feet from the ground
  • Twist side to side focusing on keeping a tight core and breathing properly as you twist

4) Single-Arm Farmers Carry

The Single-Arm Farmers Carry develops core stability in unbalanced loaded movements, essential for everyday tasks like carrying your misbehaving frantic child out of a toy store.

  • Hold a heavy weight in one hand to your side
  • Walk a long distance, relative to your ability, carrying the weight in hand
  • Keep your back straight and don’t lean your hips or shoulders out of spinal alignment
  • Breathe comfortably and look straight ahead the whole time
  • Switch sides and repeat

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Cristiano D

Author Cristiano D

Cristiano Del Giacco is a lifelong martial artist with a passion for optimizing health and well-being. He has traveled the globe living in countries like Thailand, Japan, Brazil, Australia and the USA learning from some of the world’s best and regularly contributes to the natural health, fitness, and medical industries.

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