Are you ready to unlock the power of core stability? Our team of physiotherapists at Philip Wood Physiotherapy is here to guide you on this transformative journey. Call 02 9838 3030 today to schedule an appointment and discover the benefits for yourself. In the meantime, let’s get our heads around what it really means.

Understanding Core Stability: The Foundation of Movement

Core stability refers to the ability of the muscles in the trunk and pelvis to work together harmoniously to support and control movements of the spine and pelvis. It forms the foundation for almost every physical activity, from everyday tasks like bending and lifting to athletic performances and rehabilitation after injury. The core comprises a complex network of muscles, including:

  • Rectus Abdominis: Located at the front of the abdomen, this muscle helps flex the spine and stabilise the pelvis.
  • Transversus Abdominis: Positioned deep within the abdomen, this muscle acts like a corset, providing support and stability to the spine and pelvis.
  • Internal and External Obliques: These muscles run along the sides of the abdomen and assist in rotational movements of the trunk.
  • Multifidus: Found along the spine, these small muscles support and stabilise while assisting in spinal extension and rotation.
  • Erector Spinae: Grouped along the back of the spine, these muscles help maintain an upright posture and control spinal movement.
  • Pelvic floor muscles: These muscles form the floor of our muscular corset and support our pelvic organs and have an important relationship with other deep core muscles mentioned above.
  • The diaphragm: This important muscle is the separator of our chest and abdominal cavities, sitting directly beneath the lungs, it plays a key role in our breathing cycle and trunk stability.

 The Importance of Core Stability

Core stability is vital for maintaining proper alignment of the spine and pelvis, reducing the risk of injury during physical activities. A strong and stable core not only improves athletic performance by enhancing balance, agility, and power but also promotes better posture and spinal health in everyday life. Moreover, it plays a crucial role in rehabilitation, aiding in the recovery from various musculoskeletal conditions and injuries. As the name suggests it is at the core of all the movements you’ll ever want to do.

Exercises to Build Core Stability

This is about more than rock hard abs. This is about strength and harmonious movement between muscles. So, an exercise regime that targets the major and minor muscle groups of the core, including those listed above, will promote overall stability and support for the spine and pelvis.

Here are a few of our favourites:

  • Plank: Initiate from a push-up stance, with your forearms resting on the ground and elbows positioned beneath your shoulders. Contract your core muscles to maintain a straight alignment from head to heels, sustaining the pose for 30-60 seconds.
  • Dead Bug: Lie on your back with your arms stretched towards the ceiling and knees bent at a 90-degree angle. Gradually lower one arm and the opposite leg towards the ground while keeping your core activated, then return to the initial position and repeat the movement on the other side.
  • Russian Twist: Sit on the floor with your knees bent and feet planted, grasping a weight or medicine ball in front of your chest. Lean back slightly and rotate your torso to one side, then return to the centre position before executing the twist on the opposite side.

Challenges to Core Stability: Addressing Common Issues

Weakness or imbalances in the core muscles can lead to lower back pain, poor posture, and/or decreased athletic performance. Additionally, injuries such as herniated discs or muscle strains can occur when the core muscles are unable to support and stabilise adequately during movement.

So, invest in your core stability through exercise and mindful movement. And know that the physiotherapists at  Philip Wood Physiotherapy are here to help if you have any concerns. We’ll tailor an exercise programme just for you and help you build the strength and stability you need. Call us on 02 9838 3030 today to schedule an appointment with our experienced physiotherapists.

References

Physiopedia [ND] Core Stability. [Online] Available at https://www.physio-pedia.com/Core_Stability?utm_source=physiopedia&utm_medium=search&utm_campaign=ongoing_internal. Accessed on 19/02/2024.