The Best Core Exercises

I used to absolutely hate training my core area (abdominal muscles, hips, and the back).  I just didn’t think it was all that necessary since I work all my other muscle groups throughout the week and I often think “well, my core must get some work because of it”.

Ab workout? Nah, no thanks!


However, the more I learn about fitness through experience at work or through researching on my own, the more I realize that core training is in fact very beneficial to any workout program.

The benefits I’ve noticed personally are less tightness in my hips (actually, tightness is not much of an issue lately!) and no more IT band pain while running. Also, I’ve experienced less low back pain in general, which I sometimes get when I get lazy with stretching and doing my core workouts.

Some other benefits of core training include:

  • Better posture
  • More control
  • Improved, more powerful performance
  • Injury prevention and rehabilitation
  • Increased protection and “bracing” for your back
  • A more stable center of gravity
  • A more stable platform for sports movements


My Core Training

I don’t have a specific schedule for core training, but with the classes I teach I tend to work my core area specifically about 3-4 times per week.  I teach a Mat Pilates class once per week and the entire class is dedicated to core training.  I also include core exercises in my Cardio Pilates classes, where half of the class is dedicated to core training.  Today I wanted to share with you some of my favorite moves that target the core.  

Here are the best core exercises (in my opinion of course!):


Swiss Ball/Stability Ball Exercises

Supine Position


Do you regularly train your core muscles? If so, what are  your favorite exercises?

P.S.  I love how I wrote my post on “Tips for Running with Dogs” because this morning at 5:45AM while getting ready for our 2-mile run, Boo and Sophia saw a bunny and at the moment I didn’t have a tight grasp on their leashes…and yep, they got away and went running down the street!

I swear, it was all Sophia's idea!

Who me?

Boo makes this crazy screaming sound when he sees small animals, so I’m sure the neighbors appreciated that.  I did get them back easily, but wow, did that wake me up!  Lesson learned: Have a FIRM grasp on their leashes  from the start!

Well, I’m off to North Carolina tonight for the long weekend!! Have a wonderful Memorial Day! 🙂

8 responses to “The Best Core Exercises

  1. I’ve gotten a little better about paying attention to the core. Exercise dvds help me with that. A lot!

  2. oh love this post because core training is SO important!!! I always make sure my clients have some sort of core/plank exercise involved even if they dont want any core specific exercises 😉 I always sneak them in!!!

    have fun this weekend!

  3. Have a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend!! I try to work my core two times per week, but I am always adding in core exercises to my routines every now and then to spice things up.

  4. I have to make a concentrated effort to train my core. It’s to easy for me to just assume I work it enough in other workouts. I try to do 2 focused ab sessions each week. Planks are my favorite!

  5. Thanks for the informative post! I always plan to do core exercises 3 days per week, but it usually just happens twice. Ooops! I have to admit though, I totally hate planks! The rest of it isn’t tooooo bad. I hope you had a good weekend!

  6. I hope you had a great weekend in NC! (Such a beautiful place!!)

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