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Home > Patient & Family Resources > Health Library > Fitness: Increasing Core Stability
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Increasing your core stability means making the muscles of your trunk stronger to keep your spine and body stable. This helps you stay balanced when you move.
Core stability benefits everyone, from older people to top professional athletes.
Core stability exercises are easy to do. It's more important that you do them well than that you do a lot of them. That's why it's a good idea to have a physical therapist check to be sure you have learned to use the right muscles and breathe normally while you do the exercises.
When you do any core stability exercise, it's important to make sure:
Pulling your belly in
You can do this exercise anywhere, in any position. Try it while you work at your desk, drive, or stand waiting for your turn at the drugstore.
The bridging exercise works the muscles around your lower body and hips. Do not continue with this exercise if it causes pain.
After you have mastered these simple exercises, your physical therapist can help you find more challenging ways to work on your trunk muscles. For example, you might do some activities while standing up, then do the same activities while sitting on a large ball called a Swiss ball. The ball makes it harder for you to keep your balance as you do the activity.
Other Works Consulted
Dillin W, et al. (2010). Thoracolumbar spine injuries in the adult. In JC DeLee et al., eds., DeLee and Drez's Orthopaedic Sports Medicine, 3rd ed., vol. 1, pp. 714–753. Philadelphia: Saunders Elsevier.
Leetun DT, et al. (2004). Core stability measures as risk factors for lower extremity injury in athletes. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 36(6): 926–934.
Marshall PW, et al. (2005). Core stability exercises on and off a Swiss ball. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 86(2): 242–249.
Negrini S, et al. (2010). Rehabilitation of lumbar spine disorders: An evidence-based clinical practice approach. In WR Frontera et al., eds., DeLisa's Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation: Principles and Practice, 5th ed., vol. 1, pp. 837–882. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins.
Current as of:
January 16, 2020
Author: Healthwise StaffMedical Review: Adam Husney MD - Family MedicineKathleen Romito MD - Family MedicineElizabeth T. Russo MD - Internal Medicine
Current as of: January 16, 2020
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine & Elizabeth T. Russo MD - Internal Medicine
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