Core Fitness - What Is It and What Is It Good For?

Core training is a no-longer-new catchphrase on the fitness landscape. The concept of core fitness, by now, has been promoted by every Pilates school, yoga center, and chain of fitness clubs around the world. Many doctors, including chiropractors, physiatrists, orthopedists, and even cardiologists, emphasize the importance of core training with their patients. Practically every physical therapist and personal trainer has learned a variety of core exercises to use with their clients. Core fitness has become an advertising buzzword, helping to sell all kinds of health-related products. The overall result is raised awareness of the importance of core strength and the opportunity to engage in a critically important form of healthy exercise.1,2,3

What exactly is the "core" and what are you training when you train it? Your core muscles are your four abdominal muscle groups - the transversus abdominis, internal obliques, external obliques, and rectus abdominis. Back muscles, too, are included in the core group - specifically the erector spinae, longissimus thoracis, and multifidus. The importance of the core muscles is their ability to provide a "center" or focus for the physical work your body is doing. If your core is not fit other muscles will have to take over, leading to the likelihood of strains, sprains, and other injuries.

Who even knew we had a core? Plenty of people did, long ago, but in those days no one talked about a "core". For many decades football coaches, ballet instructors, and gymnastics coaches trained their athletes in vigorous and strenuous techniques that all focused on core strength. High school gym teachers knew about the core. Remember squat thrusts, jumping jacks, and push-ups? All those ancient exercises (that we used to groan and moan about) train deep core muscles. We were doing core fitness before there was "core fitness".

Why do we need core fitness today? More and more our work involves sitting down. We stare at computer screens for eight hours a day. Instead of doing physical work such as farming or building, we type on a keyboard and talk on a cell phone. The long-term result is that muscles, tendons, and ligaments lost their integrity. Tight neck muscles, tight lower back muscles, and weak abdominal muscles are the result, and these issues lead to more serious problems such as chronic headaches, cardiovascular stress, impaired digestion, and depression. We need fitness activities that start building us back up again, and the right place to start is at the center - by engaging in core fitness.

The best thing about core fitness is that you don't need any equipment. You could get a mat and a physioball, but those items are optional. Take a yoga class. Take a Pilates class. Learn a few core exercises and begin to do them several times a week. You'll soon begin to notice that you feel better, in general. You have more energy. You're sleeping better. Your mood is improving. All due to a few squats, a few planks, and a few push-ups. That's a pretty good deal.

1Kennedy DJ, Noh MY: The role of core stabilization in lumbosacral radicuopathy. Phys Med Rehabil Clin North Am 22(1):91-103, 2011
2Behm DG, et al: The use of instability to train the core musculature. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab 35(1):91-108, 2010
3Dunleavy K: Pilates fitness continuum: post-rehabilitation and prevention Pilates fitness programs. Rehab Manag 23(9):12-15, 2010

Locations

Find us on the map

Office Hours

Our Regular Schedule

Monday:

7:00 am-1:00 pm

3:00 pm-7:00 pm

Tuesday:

7:00 am-6:00 pm

Wednesday:

7:00 am-1:00 pm

3:00 pm-7:00 pm

Thursday:

By Appointment Only

Friday:

7:00 am-5:00 pm

Saturday:

7: 00 am - 12:00 (NOON)

by appointment only

Sunday:

Emergency Only

Testimonials

Reviews By Our Satisfied Patients

  • "Life would not be the same without Dr. Jayne! In addition to being the loveliest and most caring person, she's an extraordinary chiropractor. She truly has healing hands, an incredible knowledge of the body (MY body!), an uncanny gift for knowing exactly what the issue is right away, and then correcting it effectively. I always know I can rely on her to correct my neck and back issues when they arise, sometimes just after one visit. And Dr. Lou and Jayne's staff are wonderful - kind and patient, and always extremely helpful. I wouldn't go anywhere else."
    Beth B
  • "Dr Jayne and Dr Lou are both amazing! They offer not just great care, but a warm, welcoming atmosphere— truly family friendly! They go above and beyond and truly care about the whole patient, well beyond chiropractic care. Dr Jayne has offered amazing support and solace through my journey as a new mom and I will always be grateful!"
    Katherine G.
  • "Absolutely amazing ! First, the staff was very friendly. I am 8 months pregnant and I've had a lot of back/shoulder pain, and the doctor Jayne was very friendly and professional. You can tell she know what she's doing. She did an amazing job, when I got up from the chair I felt like I was 10 years old again ! My pain was completely gone. I am so happy I have found that place !"
    Manon J S.
  • "I've seen a whole bunch of chiropractors and Lou and Jayne are the best, by far. They're also two of the sweetest people I know."
    Scott C.
  • "I have no words to express my gratitude for Dr. Jayne. I was looking for a Webster Technique chiropractor during my pregnancy and I am so happy I found her. Thanks to her treatments we were able to turn the baby in optimal position and avoid any kind of medical interventions during delivery. But most of all, I valued her precious advice and physical and emotional support during before and after my baby was born. The most beautiful moment of all was giving my son his very first adjustment when he was only couple of days old. I definitely recommend her and her team!"
    Marija R.
  • "Dr Lou and Dr Jayne are fantastic. They've put my spine back in line and are always the nicest people to work with."
    Gerry G
  • "Friendly and welcoming. I enjoy my visits here as they are short and sweet, and really contribute overall health. Twice a week was all I needed and it has changed my world."
    Carlos C
  • "Dr. Lou has taken care of me for close to 20 years. ALWAYS spot on and just an amazing staff. Thank you for all you do."
    Marc W
  • "For two days I have been dealing with that ache in my bicep and having to stretch my hand and it constantly cracking...within minutes of leaving your office from my adjustment my ache is gone and no need to stretch the hand and when I did no cracking. Magic Hands I tell ya!!"
    Janice Bowman
  • "I highly recommend Family Chiropractors for all you health needs ..... From a tune up to a serious issue they will bring you back to the road of recovery ..... They are knowledgable and listen to your needs and concerns ..... I have gone to Dr Lou for over 10 years and I will tell you as a runnner and a yogi you can not find someone better or more caring ... Give them a try ... I believe you will be glad you did and so will your body."
    Thomas Randazzo
  • "It's miraculous how they make me feel better so quickly!"
    Richard Reiter
  • "Drs. Lou and Jayne are the best. Wonderful with even the very youngest children and babies, all the way to folks in later life. Friendly, personable, and strong at what they do -- each with his or her own style. Great to have appointments with both of them! They also have things like a water massage table, which is a wonderfully relaxing mini-escape, and laser treatments for things like carpal tunnel. They are also a gay-friendly business, which encourages me to refer more folks to them."
    Elizabeth Schroeder
  • "Love that place"
    Joe V