In this blog “How To Get a Six Pack – or not!” you will get a really good understanding of what a strong core actually is.
Have a read if thousands of planks does’t quite sound your thing. How To Get a Six Pack and What is core strength – you might be surprised at the difference.
- A 3 minute read
- Helps you decide whether you still want a six pack
What is Core Strength (and how to get it!)
Many of us quite like the idea of a six pack. These days many girls, as well as men, also want the toned-all-over look. It will take you thousands of planks, crunches and other exercises to get one! You might just change your mind after reading about How To Get a Six Pack – or not!
Here is something that takes most people by surprise:
A six pack doesn’t indicate core strength. They are not synonymous.
Most of us are aware that a strong core is great for preventing injury, it’s fab for overall mobility too. And yes you’ll look good, through improved posture.
What is My Core?
Well it’s more than your six pack! Your core is made up of both deep and superficial muscles. There is the inner core, the pelvic floor and the diaphragm. A very thin muscle in your spine also forms part of your core, it is called the multifidus.
The term ‘strong core’ relates to all these muscles that, when activated, support the spine and pelvis. Even Bodybuilding.com agrees with us about this, they talk about core strength and don’t mention a six pack!
Why do I need a Strong Core?
Think about a house. Without the internal load bearing walls, it simply wouldn’t be very strong. Your body is the same, a solid internal structure will help keep you upright and pain free! You will be safe from excess movement that can damage other parts of your body by placing stress on them. This potential stress should be avoided because it can lead to injury and pain. A six pack might look good but it isn’t as fit for purpose. Always start with your core!
Activate Your Core
The following advice is relevant to everybody. If you suffer with lower back pain, you really do need to read it!
You should be aiming for your lower back to be in a neutral position throughout the day. A neutral lumbar spine ensures the least amount of stress on the joints and ligaments in the lower back. When you achieve this posture you significantly reduce the likelihood of injury.
Having said that, it’s also really important that you move regularly as even the perfect posture won’t stop you getting pain if you stay still all day.
With the lives we all live today – sitting at desks and in cars for long periods of time – poor posture is very common. A strong core will help with everything from sitting at your desk to sports performance to doing housework.
Pilates can activate your core. And a strong, “switched on” core can minimise pain and discomfort. After you have your core in check is the time to think about a six pack … if you still want one!
Can Pilates Help?
Pilates helps you to understand your own body. When you practice you will teach yourself to move in a controlled way. You will identify your inner core, helping you to engage it. As you go about your daily life, your core will begin to engage automatically.
Practice Pilates regularly and you will have a core that actively supports you, without even having to think about it.
How Pilates Works
When practiced correctly, Pilates can be an amazing form of whole-body exercise, not only a core strengthening tool. We teach with a close hands on approach which ensures the correct technique is used. Tess runs one to one and small classes at the True Physio Lancaster clinic.