Defining the core could be the biggest debate of the last five years. I am going to simplify the true role of the core. To me, there is no core, the body is one piece. The core is then the bodies ability to work together to effectively fire your Abdominals. I will explain. Your abdominal muscles connect from your ribs to your hips.
If your scapula does not sit on your ribs and your hips are not in neutral , then you will lose efficiency of the abdominals stabilizing power. We also know all the leg muscles cross the hip and knee joint and all the upper body muscles that move the scapula. A good core exercise is not about the exercise but the execution of keeping neutral alignment. This will have the biggest carryover of health and performance.
Here is were it comes together. The roll of the abdominals is to stabilize the spine and pelvis. The hips are to be mobile as well as the thoracic spine. When the abdominals are not stable then hips become stiff and lose mobility to help out the abdominals. The key is not only a strong core but one that fires right.
- focus on four quadrants - armpits to shins / shins to armpits
- breathing into ribs
- find out your pelvic tilt. It will help you understand if you need to fight flexion or extension
- low level core activation before workouts , games and stretching.If your core is firing you body will let go into the stretch (static or dynamic)