After many hours of thinking about what to do with my low back pain. I decided to get the flex belt and try it out. Now I’m no fan of abdominal machines, gimmicks and so-called miracles. I’m true purest and believe you need to train the inner and outer unit to the maximum. However, this is what happened and lead me down this pathway.
I volunteer at my son’s Catholic high school by mowing all the athletic fields. After hours upon hours my low back begins to hurt. I stretch and do other low back remedies. After talking with our athletic trainer, he suggested some electrical stimulation. So he did it to me in his office, and my mind started to wonder…what if I could do this while I’m on the lawn mower? So I started searching the web and found The Flex Belt. It is easy to use just put the pad on strap it around your waist and tune it on.
We all have our reservations about exercising and most people just do not have the determination and resilience to keep at it. Choosing to chisel your core has numerous benefits, and the results are simply amazing once you stick to it and work hard.
Your core muscles are not listed on the human anatomy, and they are classified or called your core muscles because they make up the core. They are not distinctively marked as core muscles, but they are a group of muscles that play a very vital and crucial role when it comes to playing sports, having stamina and so forth.
Core muscles are those muscles that are found in and around your trunk and pelvis area. They girdle that area. Your core muscles are vital when it comes to maintaining stability when reaching, stretching and when you bend. The benefits of building, strengthening and chiseling your core are countless and broad. Strengthening your core muscles is also great because it will definitely improve your posture, and it will protect you from lower back problems and pain. Continue readingContinue reading Chisel Your Core With Pilates
Have you been to a fitness center or a gymnasium lately? If so then you might have noticed some big colorful balls kept around the corners of the main fitness area. You might have also seen people using these balls for assisting them in exercises. All this is a part of what is now being known as core training. Core training is a training that includes specific exercises for muscle strengthening.
These days core training is becoming quite popular at several gymnasiums, health centers, and fitness centers. Many fitness experts believe that core training is a very special program and the reason is that it helps people to get relief from different types of pain and aches caused by poor posture and even weak muscles. Most of the times, people get back aches and lower back pain and this is because we are so used to working 24×7 on computers. Sitting in one place for too long with crouching back can lead to severe back pain and even critical back problems. Hence, core training has been introduced to offer relief from back pain apart from the fact that it also helps in improving the overall balance of the body in older people. These days, even athletes are performing core strengthening exercises in order to increase the stability of the body for peak performance.
Most people who are seeking a focus on physical fitness will have to work on aerobic activity as well as strength training, which will primarily enhance the larger muscle groups in the body and the limbs. On the other hand, core muscles will bring in certain amount of stability to most of the aerobic exercises as well as strength-training exercises. This is one of the many reasons why core training is being regarded as a very special and focused type of training.
Understanding Core Training
There are different types of exercises that can be performed for the back, the abdomen, calves, shoulder, chest and other muscles of the body. Each of the exercise is different from the other and is defined by a specific term. Similarly, Core training refers to a training that consists of exercises for enhancing the core muscle groups in the human body. With the help of core training, you will be able to improve the strength as well as enhance the endurance of certain muscles in your body.
The core muscles in the human body actually assist in holding the body steady and keep it in good alignment. So it doesn’t matter whether you are sitting on a chair for the entire day or playing a long game of football, your body will remain steady. As a part of the core strengthening exercises, you will learn to hold your body still while the trainers will apply destabilizing forces. Some of the other destabilizing forces include movement of arms and legs.
The Core Muscle Groups
The core muscle groups are stretched across the body but most importantly include the abdominal muscles as well as the back muscles, which assist in stabilizing the spine. Some of the core training instructors include various muscle groups like the muscles of buttock, the hips, inner thigh as well as lower and upper back muscles.
There are 4 different types of abdominal muscles, which form the six-pack and these are Transversus abdominus, Rectus abdominus, External obliques, and Internal obliques. The innermost or deepest abdominal muscle is the transversus abdominis, which needs to be fit enough to prevent any injury to the back. This is a fairly large muscle group that is wrapped around your lower body. If and when this muscle contracts, it will compress your abdomen. In fact, you will be able to feel the compression when you cough or breathe out forcefully. In order to engage this muscle group, more often than not, your fitness instructor will ask you to pull your navel closer to your spine. When you do that, you will feel the muscle moving deeper inside. This is an important muscle group of the core training.
There are two sets of internal and external obliques muscles that will help your body to rotate. These muscles will also assist the transversus abdominis to stabilize your body. The core back muscles will be engaged only when you lift your shoulders or legs while lying on your stomach.
Core training can be easily added to any exercise program although
“Stomach exercise” is the most frequently asked about and searched on (via internet) yet misunderstood subject in the entire field of health, fitness and exercise. And it’s no wonder. Regardless of age, experience or gender, everyone wants a flat “stomach” because the abdominal region is the true showcase of your physique. Since the abs are usually the last place to “shape up” and “lean out,” then most people would say that if you’ve got abs, you’ve got it all.
Well, in my way of thinking, this is only partially true. There’s more to a complete physique than “abdominal exercises” and “six pack abs” and most people are completely wrong about “stomach exercises” and “”stomach muscles.” (you’ll find out why in just a moment)…
The Difference Between “6-Pack Abs” And Truly “Fit Abs”
Having a great looking set of abs is very much a matter of low body fat. But make no mistake, just being lean and seeing a “six-pack” doesn’t mean you are strong, fit or conditioned. Real fitness means more than visible muscle development, it means strength, endurance, and stability, and this type of true functional fitness does not come from merely eating the right foods or reducing your body fat.
Nutrition is so important that you could even say that “abs are made in the kitchen, not in the gym” and you would not be telling a lie. But this clever maxim is not telling the whole truth either. Great abs come from nutrition AND training, not one or the other. The training develops them. The nutrition uncovers them.
Don Juan Ponce de Leon arrived in America in 1493 looking for a fountain of youth and today in the “stomach exercise” marketplace, it seems that far too many people are looking for a “magic fountain” in order to flatten their waistlines.
Ponce never found the fountain of youth and you will never find a magical solution for flat abs. There are no short cuts. It takes a change in lifestyle to get a change in health, physique and performance. That includes nutrition AND training.
There’s No Such Thing As “Stomach Exercises”
THIS is your stomach!
Proper choice of exercise is a critical factor in your quest for a firm and flat waistline. But you will never get a great “stomach” from ANY “stomach exercise” because your stomach is a part of your digestive tract, not your skeletal muscular system! So let’s get the terminology straight, shall we?
The area of you body you really want to improve is called your “core region.”Many people refer to it as the “abdominal region.” However, training only with “ab exercise” is NOT the optimal approach.
The abdominals only include the front (anterior) side of your body and if the only type of training you do is abdominal training, you may be unwittingly setting yourself up for lower back problems. If you don’t think this is serious, then consider this statistic:
According to the American Chiropractic Association, more than 31 million Americans are suffering from low back pain at any given time.
So would you like to trade great abs for a bad back?
I didn’t think so. The good news is that you can kill two birds with one stone. You can develop great abdominal muscles, great core muscles and a strong, pain-free back by using exercises that focus not on the “stomach,” (which is not a muscle you train at all), not on the “abdominals,” (which is only part of the muscles you need to target), but on the entire core.
The core is the key to your success.
The core is the entire complex of muscles around your hip and waist region from your lower rib cage to the bottom of your pelvis. If you just focus on “abdominal exercises” alone (or “stomach” exercises, LOL), you will develop what I refer to as a “one dimensional body.” I focus on training the body as a whole, or “multi-dimensional training” to develop a complete person and to develop effective and powerful athletes.
What every program I write has in common is that I do not attempt to “isolate” the abdominals (or train the “stomach muscles!”) It’s all about the core and about integrating your body as a unit so you function better in daily life.
As you do core-focused exercise programs you not only train your muscular system but also the system that drives your muscular system – that is, the nervous system. This may very well be the most important secret for getting better results in your workout programs.
The more efficiently your nervous system works, the better your results will be. Core workouts that improve both muscular strength and conditioning while also improving neural drive will develop stronger neural control of the associated muscles.
This type of training for your core may very well be the most important secret for getting better results in your workout programs.
THIS is why my “brand” of core training gets results in women who have had C-sections, or other abdominal surgeries when nothing else worked
THIS is why the core exercises I recommend will flatten out a “pooching” belly, which is a result of deep muscular weakness and lack of neuromuscular control (It’s NOT just a body fat problem!)
THIS is why my clients have overcome agonizing lower back pain when all else failed
THIS is why my workout program have helped men and women recover from embarrassing incontinence
THIS is how I have helped hundreds of new moms regain their flat and firm midsections after having their babies
THIS is why my clients remain injury free, while so many other training programs are actually the CAUSE of injuries
And THIS is why my type of training – PROGRESSIVE CORE TRAINING – develops amazing athletes – top wresters, PGA golfers, and pro boxers with powerful punches and abs of steel.
The purpose of this article was not to give more workout routines (I’ve written an entire book about core training that’s FULL of workouts (Firm And Flatten Your Abs) and there’s plenty of Free sample workouts to be found on this site and lots more to come in upcoming issues of my newsletter. The purpose of this article was to “install” 3 incredibly important lessons into your brain:
You can’t train your “stomach” because your stomach is an internal organ of digestion not a skeletal muscle!
You can’t totally “isolate” your abdominals because your abdominals do not work in isolation, they work in conjunction with the rest of your body (and “isolation” as with only doing crunches, is not the optimal approach anyway).
You get more by training your core! You become a better athlete, you help prevent injuries, you get stronger and you get that coveted 6-pack abs look.
I hope the “morals” of these lessons have already sunk in and will become a part of your own fitness philosophy… and the next time you hear someone talk about “stomach exercises”, you’ll now be able to get a good chuckle out of that.
MYTH #1: If you train abs every day, you’re guaranteed a six-pack.
One of the most common abdominal myths is that training your
abdominals every day is the best way to get a small waistline and
develop the six-pack look in your stomach. This misconception
was probably funneled through the bodybuilding world, because
so many bodybuilders train their abs daily prior to competitions.
Despite the fact that bodybuilders appear onstage
with incredibly ripped abs, their abs come from their diet, not
just their daily ab workouts.
Daily training is not only a waste of time, it’s an approach that
won’t work for the average person who doesn’t use
performance-enhancing substances or have a naturally high
There are two reasons that daily abdominal training is
unnecessary and does not guarantee you a six-pack.
First, the muscle tissue of your abs is virtually the same as the
muscle tissue in the rest of your body. Abdominal muscles
cannot become stronger and more developed without time to
rest and recover after each workout, just like any other muscle
group such as your biceps or chest. You wouldn’t do 100 barbell
curls every day to “see your biceps” or 100 bench presses every
day to “see your pecs,” so why do the same for your abs?
Second, even if you could achieve excellent muscular
development in the abs with daily training, you won’t be able to
see your abs if they’re covered with a layer of fat. Daily
abdominal training does not burn the fat off your midsection!
Fat is lost by creating a caloric deficit through your diet. Build
the muscle tissue with exercise; burn the fat with diet.
During the initial phase of the Firm and Flatten Your Abs program
(Level 1), I recommend that you perform exercises daily for the
first two to three weeks. However, these Level 1 exercises are
very basic movements using only your body weight, and they are
designed to prepare, strengthen, and neurologically program
your body for the more advanced exercises to follow.
For the long term, you can get fantastic results training your abs
every other day (about four days a week), and once they’re
developed, you can maintain your abs with even less frequent
Expansion Sit-Backs – Another Amazingly Effective Abdominal Exercise
You’ ve Probably Never Done Before (Video Article)
By David Grisaffi
There are literally hundreds of abdominal exercise you can choose from.
Not only that, most ab exercises have multiple variations which allow
for progression through increasing levels of difficulty. With such a
wide range of exercise to choose from it’s a shame that so many people
keep repeating the same boring workouts over and over again.
If you’re not changing your exercises regularly (continually challenging
yourself with more advanced movements as your strength increases), then
you’re on your way to staleness, boredom and progress plateaus. If you
want to keep improving your abs, week after week, then here is another
new abdominal exercise to add to your repertoire: Expansion Sit Backs.
I have had advised against over-dependence on the traditional sit up for
many years. Regular sit ups put too much pressure on your low back by
using your hip flexors and hamstrings to perform almost 2/3 of the work.
This over-tightens these muscles, pulling your pelvis forward and
eventually leading to low back pain.
If you want a six pack, take a pass on the standard sit up, if for no
other reason, than because there are better choices.
If you could swap out your old sit ups with a new exercise that could
minimize hip flexor and hamstring involvement, maximize abdominal
contraction and develop better abs without low back pain, would you do
it? Of course you would. And I have just the exercise for this – the
Expansion Sit Back. This exercise is not only a favorite of mine, it’s
also backed up by many EMG studies that compare hip flexor and abdominal
activation. The latest study coming out of Canada indicated that this
exercise produced the greatest abdominal activation while minimizing
flexor activation. Continue readingContinue reading Expansion Sit-Backs – Amazingly Effective Abdominal Exercise
Bodyblades are one of the most under used and beneficial core power
training tool ever designed. It is an innovative workout system which
leads to quick and effective muscle strengthening, power development,
core stabilization and toning.
What is a Bodyblade?
Bodyblade is an exercise device which is lightweight, durable,
multifunctional and takes up very little space to store. The tool is so
compact that it can easily fit inside the closet, under the bed and
dozens of other places where the conventional weights and machines fail
to go. It is ready to use and can be used anywhere and at anytime,
requires no adjustments, bands or weights.
Bodyblade is an exercise stick that somewhat resembles a double-sided
sword. The handle in the middle is quite comfortable, and easy to work
What does a Bodyblade do?
Exercises are executed by gripping the center of the exercise blade and
shaking it back and forth. The Bodyblade can oscillate back and forth in
various directions and angles to train different body parts. It’s an
extremely good tool to get an effective muscle sculpting workout within
a short span of time, if used properly. This device is very strong and
sturdy and can be used for a longer period of time.
Bodyblade has several unique features which definitely make it different
compared to the other exercise equipment available. There really isn’t
any other type of equipment that is like the Bodyblade. Most other
systems work on the principle of the user attempting to lift a weighted
item or stretch an elastic band. Bodyblade uses the principles of
inertia to motivate the muscles and make them stronger. With Bodyblade
there is an absence of weights or elastic bands that can break. The
Bodyblade, works on the opposite principle: Once the ends begin to move,
inertia keeps them in motion and then it’s up to you to resist it. The
intensity and the acceleration of the movement can be controlled by you,
which make it safer and more effective than any other equipment. The
risk of damage through overexertion is much less. All this is made
possible due to the inertial exercise principles and the patented
technology built into every Bodyblade. Continue readingContinue reading Bodyblades Are Good For Core Strength
What, working out for golf? Am I crazy? Not really. Think about it, your muscles will have to be tone, at least, to hit a straight and long ball. When you are using your short game you will need strong quadriceps and hamstrings to maintain the proper posture to follow through and end up in the same posture every time. You want to fire through that tee shot and hit that chip straight, every time.
It is true that you use dozens of muscles with every golf shot, but the core muscles are where you derive the power and stability to reach the green and be inline for the cup. When I mention the core muscles I am talking about the abdominals and, to a less extent, the quadriceps and hamstrings. An abdominal workout that includes transverse rotation will greatly improve your golf game.
What Are Your Core Muscles?
There are four core muscles that need to be worked out in order to improve your golf game and maybe even develop a six pack of abs. They are the rectus abdominis, inner and outer obliques, and the transverse abdominis. A lot of words to describe the muscles that hold in your gut, help you breath and twist your body around. Strengthening these muscles, along with the hamstrings and quadriceps, will add up to 50 yards to your drive.
How Can I Strengthen My Core Muscles?
There are dozens of exercises that you can do to strengthen your core muscles and improve your golf game. As a Golf Biomechanic, I often see people who wonder why they are losing distance of their game and not shooting as straight as they used to. My first question is “Do you work out at all?” The general answer is “No.”. You can not let your body go and expect it to continue to perform at the same level. Professional golfers know that they have to maintain a strong core to last on the tour.
A good place to start is with isometric exercises. You can do these in the office, car, or on the couch. Simply exhale and tighten your stomach and buttocks as much as possible without pain and hold that pose for 10 seconds. Relax and breathe. Repeat the exercise as long as you desire. Always keep your back straight. Do the same with your legs. While sitting, hold your knees at a 90 ° angle to the floor and tighten them as much as possible. Hold for 10-15 seconds, relax then repeat.
That is the easy stuff. Why don’t you work on those quads and hammies next? Stand up and breathe normally. Squat to an approximate sitting position. Hold for 10-15 seconds and stand back up, then repeat. It may help to rest your back against a wall so that you maintain the correct posture. You are going to feel that I guarantee it. A little time on the treadmill or outdoors jogging is great stuff for these muscles. Always make sure to stretch before your game. Take your driver out. One hand on the grip and the other just above the club head. Bend to the ground with your back and knees straight. For a little extra stretch, Touch the club head to one foot, return to the start position , then touch it to the other foot.
Now let’s look at those abdominal muscles. The will need to be tone and string. There is no way to avoid doing the good old sit-up. Crunches and reverse crunches are better tools, but you will need to start where you are most comfortable. You will always want to add transverse rotation to your ab workout so that you can gain the most for your exercises. It is easy enough to do. As you bring your upper body towards your knees rotate from knee to knee. Left elbow to right knee, down, up, right elbow to left knee. Keep alternating this sequence until your are tired and then to one more set.
Gain Stability and Strength
Toning and strengthening your core muscles will add stability and distance to your golf game. You may not think of muscle bound athletes on the links, but how many of the top golfers have a gut that hangs over their belt? None. You need strong quads and hamstrings so your knees can stay bent during your shots. You will need strong abdominals to put more snap into the club as you bring through the shot.
I only talked about a couple of exercises in this article. There are over 40 abdominal exercise in my eBook Firm and Flatten Your Abs at flattenyourabs.net. As a Golf Biomechanic I have tried to list a variety of workouts and exercises to help the amateur golfer as well as the pros out there.