Simple Yet Essential Core Strength Training Exercises And Tips

As the word would suggest, your “core” muscles are central to your body’s ability to move effectively, and to be adequately protected. Your core muscles protect your lower back, allow you to run faster, make you stronger, more flexible, and will provide you with better posture and balance. Weak core muscles can result from a sedentary lifestyle, excess weight, poor posture, previous injury, pregnancy, not enough flexibility,and low fitness. Read on for these simple core strength training exercises and tips.

* Classes such as Pilates, and kick boxing can all be excellent and fun ways to strengthen your core muscles.

* Frequency. Core exercises should be performed at least three times weekly. A well rounded exercise program would incorporate stretching, cardio, and strength training, in addition to working out those core muscles.

* Add resistance. You will build up your core strength by incorporating resistance into your abdominal exercise routine. Machines, weights, medicine balls, and resistance bands can all be used to increase your strength. As a generalization, if you are looking for strength as opposed to endurance, your repetitions should be only about 6-12 before you are feeling fatigued.

* Add a fitness ball.
Fitness balls are a great piece of equipment for core muscle workouts. The firmer the ball, the harder the workout will be. Generally a fitness ball that allows you to sit on it with your knees bent is about the correct size for you. When starting out exercising these muscle try doing 5 of each. As you become stronger and more proficient you can work up to 10 or 15. Abdominal crunches performed while balancing on your ball are a great and simple form of core exercise. Even sitting on a fitness ball and retaining your balance is giving those core muscles a workout. Why not replace your office chair with a fitness ball for improved balance and stability?

For even more inspiration on how to work out with a fitness ball, you may want to visit the Mayo Clinic site here.

Home Gym Exercise Equipment That Works For You

Okay, so you have made the decision that you are going to improve your fitness, lose a few pounds, or build up those biceps. You have also decided that you are going to embark on this campaign from home. Exercising out of home can be a wise decision for those who work crazy hours, parents, the isolated, those who are pushed for time, and those who just aren’t into exercising in front of others. Of course, now the big decision is what home gym exercise equipment is going to be the best for you?

At this point it is very easy to be seduced by those buff bodies on the TV selling all sorts of shiny equipment that comes with promises to transform you into a creature of perfection in next to no time, but obviously at great cost. There are a few factors to consider before rushing out and purchasing that huge home gym that didn’t look quite so big in the TV studio:

* Budget. This has to probably be one of the two most important considerations when selecting workout equipment. What are you prepared to spend? What are you allowed to spend? How much can you actually afford? For those with limited finances, great bargains can be obtained from garage sales, often barely used, through EBay, and local traders.

For very little outlay at all, you can have an effective workout selection just by investing in a pair of quality shoes, a skipping rope, fitness ball, yoga mat, resistance bands, hand weights, and some free weights. Borrow some fitness books or DVDs from your local library and you are all set. Apart from the sand-shoes, these other items can all be purchased for less than a hundred bucks in total if you shop smart.

* Space constraints.
This is your other big consideration. There is no point in lusting after the home gym if you have to hang it from the rafters. For those who do not have a spare room, basement, or garage to house their equipment, the equipment mentioned above is a great place to start. None of those items takes up much space and they can all be easily accommodated in a closet or under the bed when you are not using them.

* Exercise bikes can be a great piece of equipment for the space challenged. Combined with the above equipment, you will have an excellent repertoire to base your fitness campaign. Exercise bikes don’t require much space and can be a fantastic way to incorporate the cardio part of your workout. Not only that, exercise bikes are extremely useful for burning calories when the weather is too unpleasant for walking, biking, or jogging in the great outdoors.

Set your exercise bike up in front of the TV and you won’t even realize that you are pedaling away at the miles. When you need the space, tuck it under the stairs or alongside your car in the garage. For those with problem backs and knees, recumbent exercise bikes are probably a better option. These are the exercise bikes that look a bit like a lounge chair with pedals out front. The support at the back of the chair ensures that you cannot hunch your back over the handlebars the way you can with a more conventional exercise bike.

* Goals.
Determining your goals before you start purchasing will help you realize what you really need. Is this a lifelong commitment, or just something for a few months to shed the love handles? Be realistic about how often you will use the equipment and for how long. Do you want your brand new treadmill in the next street sale after only using it once?

* Start out small.
Starting off with the basics can be a sensible idea. If you totally embrace your new lifestyle and are sure you are going to be using it then go ahead and upgrade. At this point you will have a much clearer idea of what you really want and need.