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Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Core: Essential For Speed!

A main muscle grou that gets a lot of attention is the core! Everybody wants to have the "6-Pack," but does having such a phenominal physique gaurentee that your core is strong? I will take a look today at what eactly core strength does for the typical athlete and how it can improve your speed and quickness!

The core includes the abdominus rectus muscle, or the abs, plus the obliques that curve around the sides at the base of the rib cage. The core also includes the complex muscles of the lower back, the pelvic sling and diaphragm, and the hip flexors that draw the upper leg forward and bring the knee toward the chest.

When an athletes has a strong core, it can improve several areas of their  overall fitness! In addition to getting lots of attention with your shirt off,  a strong core will provide the athlete with better balance and coordination! So maybe you have notice that some of the exercises you have done while training with me have been difficult for you because it's hard to balance.....well you have your answer! Strengthen your core! A tight strong core aligns the spine and holds it in place, which essentially forms an anchor and enables strong use and control of your body in activities such as running, walking, weightlifting, biking, etc. 

Many people believe that the muscles required to build speed and strength comes through the legs, BUT INFACT, it mainly comes from the core! Crazy! All the leg work and strengthening only builds speed to a certain limit. The most important muscle that is mainly activated during spring, agility, and quickness drills relies a lot on the core and hip flexor region.  The muscles of the core tend to have a powerful impact on motion, agility and control in every area of the body, even the hands, feet and head. And when it comes to full body control, explosivity, and agility, athletes should never underestimate the power of a serious and effective core training program.  

That's Great, but how does it get me faster? 

The core is composed of four crucial muscle groups that anchor the limbs, align the spine, and gather the energy of the body around the center of gravity located just above the hips. These muscle groups include the abs and obliques, the multifidis muscles of the lower back, the diaphragm, the pevic sling, and the hip flexors. Together, these muscle groups form a cylinder around the internal organs of the lower torso, and in the case of the hip flexors, they draw the legs up and out and bring the knees toward the chest.

So, if those muscles are strong and conditioned, it will dramatically improve you speed, agility, and reaction time! You will develop "explosive" speed and really see what your body's capabilities are! Also, once these muscles are strong, your body will involuntarily contract these muscles each time the body engages any other muscle.  EXACTLY why the core is the foundation of strength & speed! 

So What exactly should I do To Strengthen My Core & Get Faster?

That's where you find me! Call me and get into a new whelm of fitness! With a combination of plyometrics, strength, speed, and agility training, you WILL have core activation 100% of the time and not only will you start progressing towards that sweet six pack, but you will also gain speed, and improve agility and quickness.  Although diet is crucial for the abdominals to appear, performing my workouts along with other forms of exercise will get your core STRONG! You will soon be astonished at the speed you have gained when running your next race! 

So, on a final note, do NOT forget, stop the long slow cardio! It will do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING for your body physically! Unless your training for a marathon, stick to short, intense drills and full body movements! Call me today for more questions and get started with a program that delivers! 

“You have to fail a lot to learn. And the only way to do that is to start testing things.” – Will Bonner

Fail forward fast to get to success,

Mike Over
CPT, Strength & Conditioning Specialist

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