Part I -- Core Strengthening

Strengthening Your Core Muscles

Congratulations. You’ve established a regular routine to stretch your core muscles and strengthen the muscles that stabilize your pelvis and spine. Next, you’ll focus on strengthening the core muscles that help you move. As you already know, stretching also gently strengthens the core muscles that help you bend, turn, and twist your body; these next exercises will strengthen them more, helping you to move as easily and pain free as possible.

A special note: These strengthening exercises are not intended to give you a hard body, muscles bulging. The workouts are designed to be “lightweight,” to be part of a program that tones your core muscles so that they are in balance, like the strings of a finely tuned ukulele, neither too long nor too short.   

Preparing for Your Exercises

Here’s what you’ll need (the setup is the same as for core stabilization, but a quick review can’t hurt):

•A comfortable surface to exercise on. Your living room floor works. So would your garage floor with a mat or rug to lie on.

•Clothes that don’t restrict your movement. Running shorts and a t-shirt, for example.

•Drinking water to slack your thirst and keep you hydrated while you exercise.

  1. A minimum of 30 minutes of free time.

As always, check with your health care provider to be sure these core-stabilizing exercises are appropriate for you.