A strong core is the key to a strong body. Think of your core muscles as the sturdy central link in a chain connecting your upper and lower body. Whether you’re hitting a tennis ball or mopping the floor, the necessary motions either originate in your core, or move through it.
Weak or inflexible core muscles impact how well your arms and legs function.
This workout was originally seen in the 904 issue of OptiMYz as part of the Power of 4 workout by Sarah Michelle Teeter.
1 MINUTE | 3 SETS
A Sit tall on the edge of a sturdy chair (or step with four risers) and place your hands on the edge with your fingers pointing toward your knees.
B Tighten your abs and bring your toes 2 to 4 inches off the floor and lift your butt off the chair. Hold this position for as long as you can — aim for 5 to 10 seconds.
C Lower yourself down and repeat. Continue this exercise for 1 minute.
30 SECONDS EACH SIDE | 3 SETS PER SIDE
A Lay on your right side and prop yourself up on your right elbow and foot.
B Squeeze your core and lift up into a side plank. Hold tight for 30 seconds.
C Lower down and switch over to your left side. Repeat.
TIP: Keep your body straight and chest lifted up and open to the front. Don’t slouch over.
20 TWISTS | 3 SETS
A Lay down on your back, knees bent so feet are firmly on the ground. Crunch up so your back and shoulders are off the ground.
B Hold this position and twist to your right and then to your left. Complete 20 twists then slowly lower to rest.
15 REPS | 3 SETS
A Lie flat on your stomach in a straight line, with toes pointed down and arms straight over your head, palms facing down. This is your resting position.
B Lift up using your core and lower back. In one motion, lift your arms and feet off the ground 2 to 3 inches and hold for 3 seconds. Slowly lower down. Repeat 15 times.