Monthly Archives: November 2014

Effective Core Training is the first step to a Stronger Complete Body! Part #2

Effective Core Muscles Training will help stabilize your mid section and allow you to continue to do the activities you enjoy for many years without having, among other things, nagging low back pains or injuries…

In my first post I described the 2 different groups of your Core Muscles: The Inner and Outer Core muscles.

This second post is about your Inner Core Muscles:

  • Diaphragm
  • Transverse Abdominis
  • Pelvic Floor
  • Multifidus

I am certain everyone would agree that breathing is very essential to life. The diaphragm, one of your inner core muscles, is responsible for about 80% of your breathing actions. But since your diaphragm, also plays an integral part in the stability of your mid-section, it would be wise to make sure you are activating your diaphragm properly and breathing in the most effective fashion: Diaphragmatic Breathing”.

The diaphragm is a dome shape muscle at the bottom of your rib cage. When you are breathing in, your entire diaphragm should extend downward into your abdomen causing your lower ribs and stomach to expand slightly outward. This downward movement of your diaphragm will also create an increase in pressure inside your abdomen. Your other inner core muscles: Transverse Abdominis/pelvic floor/multifidus will activate against this increase in pressure and form, what you could call, your “inner core box”. These 4 muscles will together help stabilizing and supporting your spinal cord and pelvic joints against most external stress loads.

To find out if you are using your diaphragm effectively, go ahead and try this simple exercise:

  • Lie comfortably on your back and relax.
  • Place one hand on your stomach and the other hand on your chest.
  • As your breathe in deeply through your nose, your stomach should expand as your diaphragm is moving downward and your lungs are expending.
  • The hand on your stomach should therefore rise slightly upward and the hand on your chest should remain motionless.
  • As you slowly breathe out through your mouth, the hand on your stomach should move back down.

The deeper you breathe in, the greater the pressure you should feel inside your abdomen and the more aware you will also become of the contraction of your other inner core muscles.

Once you believe you are successfully doing “supine diaphragmatic breathing”, go ahead and try it standing up or sitting on a stationary bike… You will, most likely, have some difficulties but with practice you will succeed. Remember that “Practice makes Perfect!”

Diaphragmatic breathing is a very effective and relaxing way to breathe. It has been used in yoga and meditation for thousands of years.

Breathing is definitely one of these things you will have to do for the rest of your life. Might as well make sure you are breathing in the most effective way!

Train Smarter – Not Harder!