Previous routines which focused on core stability only solved part of the puzzle. The other part of the puzzle requires us to increase freedom of movement and then challenge them within this newly acquired movement. So to get better at demonstrating stability we have to focus on making sure we have good range of motion at the appropriate joints.
Do You – Train Core Stability with some Mobility
In an effort to apply some of the concepts gained from Gray Cook’s Movement, I’ve added in a few additions to our core stability routines.
We are a culture that is obsessed with the “midsection”. While our obsession is often misguided and superficial, the midsection (also referred to as the core) is incredibly important for optimal function in many activities from daily activity to sport performance.
The objective of the core stability routines such as the video shown above is to improve the body’s ability to protect the spine and to effectively transmit forces from the lower body to the upper body by challenging stability in multiple planes in various positions. These exercises aren’t random Ab routines thrown in a heap to crush you into submission. For each stability routine, focus is placed on demonstrating stability within the three planes; the sagittal plane, transverse plane and the frontal plane at various positions. For instance, in this core stability routine I perform a ½ Kneeling Cable bar push. This exercise challenges me within the transverse plane because I must resist the torque of the cable being applied to the bar each time I press my inside hand out. By performing this exercise, I challenge muscles of the midsection to resist rotation. In the ½ kneeling cable OH lift my position remains the same but the forces changes to a torque within the frontal plane. Each time I raise the bar by driving my inside arm toward the ceiling, I must resist lateral flexion or remain stable in the midsection to avoid falling. Lastly, stability ball rollouts challenge stability within the sagittal plane as I must resist falling into extension by remaining stable through the midsection. By challenging the body to remain stable in various planes, positions and at different speeds my focus was to increase the body’s ability to transfer forces effectively at the midsection. In addition, I believed these exercises would be effective at protecting the lumbar spine through increase stability.
After reading Gray’s Movement I’ve started to learn that my efforts in providing greater stability to the midsection by using these exercises may not be as effective or efficient at improving function and performance as I once believed. Gray explains to improve optimal function and thus performance it’s important to acquire freedom of movement, demonstrate an understanding of this freedom of movement from a sensory perspective and then finally demonstrate this freedom of movement from a motor control standpoint. In reference to the spine, he says that correcting mobility will have more potential positive effect on core stability and return of normal spine function than a spine stability program. Following this logic I’ve included some mobility exercise prior to the routines that may satisfy my efforts in making these core stability sessions effective and efficient. The mobility exercises chosen focus on the joints above and below the lumbar spine.