Contrary to popular belief, the core doesn’t just include the abdominal muscles. It also consists of muscles in your back and around your pelvis.
Transverse Abdominal Contraction: You may not have heard of the transverse abdominis (TVA) muscle, but it’s an extremely important muscle that acts as a stabilizer for the entire low back and core muscles. It is one of the main core stabilizing muscles of the lumbar spine. A weak TVA is often one of the many reasons people may experience low back pain. If you’re looking to alleviate lower back pain, adding some specific exercises to strengthen your TVA muscle may be helpful.
There are generally two ways to activate the TVA muscles for improved core stabilization –
Bracing refers to an isometric contraction of the TVA by contracting the muscles of the abdomen and holding them tight without movement. When bracing, imagine that you are getting ready for a punch to your belly, or preparing to lift a heavy object. The goal is to tighten the muscles without sucking in, or expanding your abdomen. To activate the TVA with bracing, you will maintain an isometric hold in this position for 6 to 10 seconds. Release and repeat several times.
Hollowing refers to a technique to activate the TVA that occurs as you suck in and compress the abdomen. To perform this technique, contract your abdomen and pull your belly button back toward your spine to make your abdomen as small as possible. Once you’ve completed this movement, maintain an isometric hold of this compressed position for 6 to 10 seconds. Release and repeat.
Glutes bridges:- The bridge is great for improving hip mobility and strengthening your lower back, two things that any desk-bound worker can really benefit from.
How To Do The Glute Bridge
1. Lie faceup on the floor, with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Keep your arms at your side with your palms down.
2. Lift your hips off the ground until your knees, hips and shoulders form a straight line. Squeeze those glutes hard and keep your abs drawn in so you don’t overextend your back during the exercise.
3. Hold your bridged position for a couple of seconds before easing back down.
Make sure you’re not pushing from your heels – the power comes from the hips and nowhere else. Aim for 2 sets of 10 bridges, two to three times a week, either as part of a warm-up.
Plank: So, what exactly is it about planks that make them a more effective movement than crunches? Well, one reason is that situps and crunches can be hard on your back. Pushing your spine against the floor can cause lower back pain later on. Additionally, planks don’t just work your core: They work your entire body. Planks require your arms, your legs, and all of your abs, making them an all-encompassing workout and a more efficient way to exercise. Planks also improve your posture.
How to do them & types of plank
High plank: Get into the top or start of a pushup position. Keep your palms and toes firmly planted on the ground, your back straight, and your core tight. A saggy back or bottom during a plank can result in lower back pain, later on, so be sure not to compromise your form. Do not let your head sag.
Low plank: Lower down to your forearms, maintaining the same positioning and form as the high plank.
Superman: There are many benefits of superman mains are Improves posture and defines back muscles. Strengthens the posterior chain. Back pain and low back pain are two common ailments, and doing this exercise can strengthen your muscles in an unloaded position to help avoid injury and pain.
How to do Superman
1. Start Position: Lie down on your belly with your forehead touching the ground and your arms extended overhead, palms flat. Keep your toes pointed away from your body and tops of feet flat on the ground.
2. Movement: With your gaze on the ground, simultaneously pull your chest and your legs into the air. 3. Return: Simultaneously lower your chest and legs back to the ground.
Try to hold the position for 10 sec more than plank & do same 2 to 3 sets.
Sources: ACE, MH, ISSA