My Favorite Core Strength Exercises

  1. Total Core Routine | Repeat the following exercises on your back, both sides, and on your stomach. (Do these at your own pace maintaining the form. The goal is to be able to do this entire routine without stopping).
    1. Upper Body (arms to your ears, only lift your upper body)
      • [10 reps] Up and down only 4 inches off the floor [10 Second Hold]
    1. Lower Body (squeeze legs together and lift them up and down- you can bring your hands to your side or under your glutes).
      • [10 reps] Up and down only 4 inches off the floor [10 Second Hold]
    1. Together (lift both arms and legs together in small movements. Press your belly button to your spine).
      • [10 reps] Up and down only 4 inches off the floor [10 Second Hold]
    1. Rock
      • [10 reps] Hollow Body Rocks (make sure these are small rocks. The bigger the rock, the less you are actually using your total core).
  1. Butt Ups (Lay on your back with legs extended at a 90 degree angle. Lift butt off of the floor. Do not allow your feet to go over your face. )
    1. [2 sets of 10 reps] Up and Down
      1. Goal is 1 set of 20 reps
    2. [2 sets of 10 Reps each side] Up with a twist
      1. Goal is 1 set of 20 reps
  2. Full Body Sit Up in Pike Position [25 Reps] | Sit in pike position with your hands on the floor. Lay back keeping your hands on the floor and then come back up. These can be performed slow or as fast as possible.
  3. V-Ups | Progressions (glue arms to ears and focus on squeezing legs together and straight)
    1. 3 sets of 10 reps. Once you can do 10 of these in a row with perfect form move on to the following.
    2. 5 sets of 10 reps
    3. 2 sets of 25 reps
    4. 1 set of 50 reps
  4. Tuck – Straddle – Pike [15 reps] | Lay on back to begin. Sit up and bring your knees into your chest in a tuck position, then come back down to hover over the ground. Sit back up, this time touch the ground in between your legs in a straddle position. Come back down to hover over the ground. Come back up to a V up. That is 1 rep. Progressions below:
    1. 5 sets of 3 reps
    2. 3 sets of 5 reps
    3. 2 sets of 7 reps
    4. 1 set of 15
  1. Hollow Body Rocks [30 reps] | This is a great exercise to do on its own if you are not going to do the total body core. This truly activates the entire core. Focus on squeezing your legs straight and together with your arms by your ears. Remember to only lift 4 -5 inches max off the ground. Pull your belly button to your spine.
  2. Slow Motion Sit Ups in a Mini Straddle Sit [10 reps] | 8 seconds lowering yourself to the ground and 8 seconds coming back up is 1 rep (keep your arms by your ears, your legs straight, and keep your feet on the floor as you come up). Lower yourself one vertebrae at a time and maintain a hollow body.
  3. Toe Touches at a 135 degree angle [20 reps] | Lay on your back and lift your legs to create a 135 degree angle with you body. Bring your arms in front of you to be parallel with your legs. Lift your upper body up just enough to maintaining your arms being parallel to your legs.
  4. Hanging Core Series | Perform these exercises hanging from a bar.
    1. Leg Raises [20 reps] To get the most out of this exercise, do them against a wall, or do your best to not swing, or have someone hold your back to not swing. Back sure your legs are straight and squeezed together. Lift your legs as high as you can without breaking form. The goal is to touch the bar with your toes while maintaining perfect leg form.
    2. Halfway Leg Raises [Goal = 10 reps]. Start with your toes at the bar and lower them 90 degrees to create a perfect L. Immediately bring your feet back up to the bar. This is the ultimate core strength test. Doing 10 of these in a row would mean you have a beastly core.
    3. Windshield Wipers [20 reps] Left to right = 1 rep. Do a leg raise to bring your toes to the bar. Hold there and sway your feet left and then right (about one foot in each direction. Progression would be 2 sets of 10 and then eventually 20 in one shot.
    4. Hanging Scissors  | Alternating leg raises with one leg at a time in a scissor like motion. Left leg and right leg = 1 rep. Your feet should go from the bar to no lower than 90 degrees from the bar.
      1. [2 sets of 10 reps]
      2. [1 set of 20 reps]
    5. Pull Up to Levers [10 reps] | You can do these 1 at a time to perfect the movement. Start in a pull up position with your chin at the top of the bar. Then extend your arms and lift your hips up to finish in an up side down hanging hollow body position. Immediately come back to a pull up position.

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