So far we’ve had my favourite lower body moves, my favourite upper body moves, and today we’re talking about my favourite core moves. As usual, I am not a PT, so do your research on proper form- I recommend the YouTube channels listed in the lower body post, and also Bodybuilding.com. Or an actual PT if you can afford it.
Now, I’ve got to say, I don’t spend a whole lot of time on “abs” if that’s what you’re here for. The workouts I do tend to use a lot of moves where I have to tense my core anyway to stabilise myself. However, I do throw in a few moves specifically to keep my core strong, and my favourites are down below…
Everybody loves planks- but a word on form before we go any further. Because bad form with planks really annoys me. Don’t let your hips drop. Don’t let your butt go up in the air. Don’t hunch your shoulders to your ears. You are a plank. Act like one.
So, along with regular and side planks, these are my favourite variations…
- Up/down planks– Get into a full plank (not on the elbows), and drop one arm to the elbow, then the other, then push one arm back up, then the other. Repeat for set number of reps. Now, your butt will go up and to the side when you do these, but stabilise yourself as best you can.
- Shoulder tap planks– Get into a full plank. Bring your right hand off of the ground, and tap the left shoulder. Lower the hand back down. Repeat with left hand going to the right shoulder. Repeat for set number of reps.
- Swiss ball planks – Full plank…with your feet on a Swiss ball. Hold for set amount of time.
- Plank Jacks– Get into an elbow plank (not a plank with fully extended arms; on your elbows). Keep your legs zipped together to begin with. Then hop your feet out, then hop them back in, maintaining good form. Repeat rapidly for set number of reps/amount of time.
Super simple. Sit on a mat to cushion the lower spine, with the knees slightly bent and feet on the floor in front of you. Take a medicine ball or kettlebell or dumbbell. Squeezing your tummy muscles, move the weight from one side to the other, maintaining good form. Repeat for set number of reps. As you become more advanced you can lift the feet off of the floor.
Double Crunches with a medicine ball
Lie on your back on a mat. Hold a medicine ball between the hands, with the hands up past your head. Bring your feet and hands together, pulling the stomach muscles in. Lower back down. Repeat for set number of reps. If this is too hard, then bend the knees until your core has strengthened through practice (I still have to do this sometimes).
Bosu ball Roundaways
Holding a medicine ball or kettlebell, stand on a bosu ball’s flat side, and perform your set number of roundaways. This will really challenge your balance at first, but it’ll give you a good laugh.
I got this move from Blogilates. Lie on a mat with your hands either by your sides, or underneath your tailbone. Pull the lower stomach muscles in, and keeping the legs straight, lift them up as far as you can, and slowly lower back down. Repeat for set number of reps. Blogilates YouTube channel will explain it better than I can, so head on over there.
There you go- a few core moves I love! Let me know any recommendations you have for me down in the comments below, or if any of these are your favourites, then let me know that too…