We all know by now why the core is so important. If you don’t know, check out my previous article on the topic. Core training in itself is a little more complicated than just the normal 100 sit-ups some people do for six-pack abs. If you really want to improve your core, you have to work on core stability, anti-movements, and core specific movements in different planes of motion. I can go on and list a bunch of core exercise that are beneficial but here I will name my top 3 core exercises I like to incorporate.
1) Pallof Press with Resistance Bands
The Pallof Press is one of my go to core exercises for anti-rotation movements. This exercise may look easy, but try keeping straight and stable. This exercise is performed where you pull the band to your chest and press it straight away from your chest. Try not to get pulled by the band and use your core to resist the rotational movement. This exercise challenges static and dynamic stability. This exercise can also be done with a cable machine.
I usually perform this exercise in three sets of 15 reps per side. I have the athlete go as slow and controlled as he/she can.
2) Stability Ball Planks
I love planks. It is the most basic core exercise to do but also one of the most challenging. When I found out there was a harder version of a regular plank, I instantly got hooked. I would not recommend this exercise for a beginner athlete because if they can’t do a normal plank, they cannot do this exercise. This exercise is beneficial because it helps with core stability. It makes your core react to the sudden “shaky” movements your body does when balancing on the ball.
3) KettleBell Suitcase Carries
Lastly, I always incorporate weighted carries. Weighted carries work on grip, hip, and back strength. It also challenges your core to resist lateral flexion. When performing this exercise, do not try to go super heavy. The goal is to remain upright and as straight as possible. Since the weight is only on one side of the body, this exercise challenges the core even more.