This article has been split to two because the topic is very broad.
Everybody seems to be interested in strengthening the core muscles; if you’re not familiar with core training then you have been left out in the fitness industry. Unfortunately, because of its popularity recently, “core training myths” were also invented. This article will tackle some of the more popular myths and offers corrective “truths” for each.
10. “The core is the abdominal muscles”
No, the abdominal muscles are just part of the core. There are 29 muscles working together to stabilize the bond between the hips, pelvis and low back (the lumbo-pelvic-hip complex or LPHC).
9. “If you have a “six pack” then you have a strong core”
This is not true since having a six pack abs doesn’t mean you’re core muscles are fully developed. A six-pack simply means that the rectus abdominis muscle is fully developed, and it might cause some muscle imbalances in the core.
8. “If I do curl-ups on an exercise ball then I am strengthening my core”
Doing sit-ups or curl-ups on an exercise ball will do little to strengthen the core because it only works the spine and LPHC.
It is impossible to work the core muscle with just one movement. Core muscles can be targeted through a series of exercises.
Performing curl-ups on an exercise ball will only target the rectus abdominis and oblique muscles through a larger range of motion, since the exercise is begun with the spine curved backwards (extended) over the ball.
7. “If I do leg lifts or scissor kicking on my back on the floor I’m strengthening my core”
This is just like crunches. During leg lifts or scissor kicks, the abdominals have to pull the pelvis backwards so that the low back is pressed into the floor – again mobilizing the LPHC. Even though the lower abdominal muscles may be working isometrically to hold the low back on the floor, the exercise cannot target all the twenty-some other muscles, which make up the core.
6. “I should feel a “burn” in my core area when I do core training”
The correct way to work out the core is by working it at a very low intensity level. This makes sense, as stabilizing muscles are often your anti-gravity and postural muscles, which have to work for long periods of time.
Though, you may get the impression that core training does nothing, it is very important since it increases the strength of the core. As the core muscle get stronger, it can fully supports the weight of the body. It will limit the injury on your back since it can support the added weight on your back when lifting something.