What is core stability?
Note: As a compliment to this series of articles, we have released a webinar discussing core training for athletes and showing nearly a dozen videos of the very same exercises we use at Advantage. The webinar will only be available until Sunday so make sure you click on the link and make sure you get yours for free.
Let’s get started:
All of us strength coaches and physical therapists talk of the core, but do we even know what it means to have “core stability?” Does it mean doing sit ups all day long or planking for long periods of time? Does it mean having visible abs? Well…
What is core stability?
Kiblker’s 2006 article defines core stability as the ability to control the position and motion of the trunk over the pelvis to allow optimum production, transfer and control of force and motion to the terminal segment in integrated athletic activities.
With all of that, it takes a lot of interconnected parts to maintain core stability. Let’s check out the three basic aspects of maintaining a stable core:
You have your beach muscles (Rectus abdominus and obliques)
You have muscles you can’t see that help (Transverse abdominus, multifidus, pelvic floor, diaphragm, etc)
You have Muscles that help move things (Glutes, Lats, etc)
Spinal column, ligaments, bones
If you slouch all day in that work or school chair, your ligaments begin a process called ‘creep.’ They stretch out and can deform to the length at which you constantly require them to achieve. If you’ve ever been told to sit up straight this is the indirect reason for doing so. Placing undue, prolonged tension on these structures isn’t something you want to do year after year.
Central and peripheral nervous systems (Brain, spinal cord, and nerves). Without the nervous system, there would be no such fitness or performance trend as core stability. The only thing we’d be capable of is slouched in whatever positioning we happen to be placed. Posture and trunk stability and sway is largely an subconscious process and without the nervous system, none of it would be possible.
Without all three of these components, we’re just not able to have core stability. Some people are better at some than others. For example, someone with a hyper-mobility syndrome may have less passive restraint due to extra laxity in their connective tissues. In this person, it is very important to have knowledge and ability to use the neuromuscular aspects of core stability.
Again, in conjunction with this four part core stability series. It’s going away on Sunday night so make sure you get your copy now. Click here for your free CORE STABILITY WEBINAR.