8 Home Workout Exercises to Strengthen your Core Muscles
The core is mostly associated with the ab muscles, but there’s more to it than that. The abs and lower back muscles also known as pelvic muscles mainly make up the core. The best part about core exercises is that they can be easily included in your home workouts. You do not require any added weights or equipment for core exercises. They are highly effective and essential for the overall fitness and appearance of the body. Having a strong core guards your spine and allows you to become more substantial in other lifts and athletic exercises.
Nutrition and diet also play a major role to get a fit body, but here are 8 easy and effective exercises that provide fast and brilliant results.
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Crunches: The crunch is one of the most common abdominal exercises. It engages all the abdominal muscles but mainly works on the rectus abdominis muscle and the obliques. When performed properly, it allows both building six-pack abs and tightening the belly. It does not require any expensive equipment. You can do it on a yoga mat or any soft surface or by laying on the floor. People with lower back pain should do it carefully and slowly.
Plank: The plank is an isometric core muscle exercise that includes sustaining a position comparable to a push-up for the maximum tolerable time. The plank position engages the abdominals and other core muscles that stabilize your spine and pelvis. You can easily increase the difficulty level in planks by adding different variations to it. Moreover, planks also strengthen your shoulders, back, arms, glutes, and legs. Planks are highly effective for burning belly fat by engaging multiple muscles at one point. They provide a good posture to the body.
Bridge: Bridge exercise is another effective core exercise. A bridge exercise also isolates and strengthens your gluteus (butt) muscles — the gluteus maximus, medius, and minimus — and hamstrings, which are the main muscles that make up the posterior chain. This exercise trains your core while toning your hips and thighs as well. It helps in improving lower back and gluteus strength. A bridge exercise does not require any equipment and you can easily increase the difficulty level too.
Mountain Climbers: Mountain climber is an active core strengthening and cardio exercise. It is an effective exercise that combines a plank with knee actions, making it an excellent move for balance and core strength. Mountain climbers target your triceps, deltoids, abs, back, hip flexors, quads, hamstrings, and butt. It is a compound exercise that works on several joints and muscles at the same time. It also helps in improving your metabolic rate.
Russian Twists: The Russian twist is a type of exercise that is used to work the abdominal muscles by performing a twisting motion on the abdomen. It is effective for six-packs and obliques. It tones your core, shoulders, and hips. It's a popular exercise among professionals. It also helps with twisting movements and allows you to quickly change direction. Russian twists are versatile, can be performed anywhere, anytime.
Bird Dogs: Bird dogs will help strengthen the core with the help of contraction and balance. The factor of balance appears when the arm and leg are extended, and the other arm and leg ensure your stability. Bird dogs help you in training your whole core and will help strengthen your lower back. It’s an ideal exercise for people with low back pains and it can help to develop good balance and posture. Multiple variations can be introduced by adding weights and different techniques to increase the difficulty level.
Bicycle Crunches: To perform bicycle crunches, you start on your back with your lower back pressed against the ground and you lift your legs into the air and bend them at 90 degrees. The rotation of your legs and arms activates your obliques. The pedaling of your legs activates the pelvic muscles. The bicycle crunch builds a strong core and develops your abdominal muscles along with pelvic muscles.
Leg Kicks: Leg kicks focus on the lower abdominal muscles. There are numerous variations to this exercise. You start by lying on the floor and putting your hands underneath your lower back. Then you start moving your legs up and down. It is important to keep your legs, shoulders, and head raised off the ground the entire time. Leg kicks strengthen your lower back muscles. It helps in improving flexibility and it is highly recommended for cutting down belly fat and burning calories.
These exercises help in toning down your abdominal muscles and strengthens your core muscles. But always make sure to use the right form, technique, and breathing. Once you get good at the preliminary level, feel free to modify the exercise for a bit of variety or to make it more difficult. Just feel the burn and embrace the pain for the best results. Never forget that fitness is a long journey and you have to hold on tight to the routine. Eat right and train hard!