Not that I look at the Wall Street Journal to validate what I do with clients, but this week my ego soared after reading the article “Hit the Floor and Give me a Dozen… Pillar Bridges.” In the article, author Kevin Helliker brings core training to the attention of his readers. (Core training has been popular for at least 10 years. Why it took this long to hit mainstream is beyond me).
Core training bridges the gap between your arms and legs. The core encompasses the entire body between your hips and shoulders. Even though the research is not all there yet, you better believe that core training reduces injury, increases speed, power, and strength all while reducing aches and pains.
Picture a wheel: your core is the hub and your limbs are the spokes. That hub has to be perfectly balanced and strong in order for the spokes to transfer energy to the tire. If the spokes were not attached to something strong like a hub, the tire would not perform well (or at all). The same is true for your body: the more efficiently you can transfer energy through the body, the better you will be able to move.
Helliker mentions that by performing core training sessions twice a week, he improved his body composition by five points (which is huge), increased his steady-state treadmill speed by a mile an hour (even though he hasn’t been running his normal 30 miles/week). Helliker also noted that as a result of his core training, his posture is great, his gait has improved and his neck is free from stiffness (staring at a computer monitor all day will do that to you).
If you are not yet sold on core training as something to implement into your future workouts, then realize this little fact: some people actually regain lost height by core training. Instead of shrinking as you age, you may even maintain your original height. Don’t forget to check with your doctor before beginning any new training regimen.