Strong core muscles are not just necessary for athletes. Having a strong core makes it easier to complete everyday activities like swinging a golf club to reaching a glass from the top shelf. A weak core can lead to more fatigue, lower endurance, and leave you prone to more injuries. It can also leave you susceptible to poor posture and lower back pain. 

Add these 6 strength training exercises to your core routine and notice the difference a strong core makes. 

PARALLEL BAR HIP RAISES - 3 SETS OF 10 REPS

  • Start with your body in a vertical leg position with your forearms resting on the pads and your hands holding onto the handles
  • Keep your back pressed firmly against the back and remove your legs from the steps, lifting them straight out in front of you until parallel with the floor
  • Hold for a few seconds, squeezing your abdominals, and slowly release back down to the starting position as you inhale for one rep

HANGING LEG RAISES - 3 SETS OF 12 REPS

  • Grab the bar with an overhand grip, your thumbs wrapped around the bar to improve stability
  • Exhale as you lift your feet off the ground, raising your straight legs outward in front of you
  • Tilt your pelvis slightly back and engage your abdominals and hip flexors to assist with the movement
  • Lower your legs back down slowly until they return to the starting position for one rep

DUMBBELL WOOD CHOPS - 3 SETS OF 15 REPS

  • Hold a dumbbell in both your hands, stand with your legs slightly wider than your shoulders for a more stable stance
  • Raise your arms up over your right shoulder, keeping your eyes on your hands, your arms should be bent but engaged
  • Bring them down diagonally across your body, lowering down and bending your knees while rotating your torso to the left
  • Keep your legs and hips square through the motion for one rep

CABLE CRUNCHES - 3 SETS OF 15 REPS

  • Attach the rope attachment to a high pulley cable and set the appropriate weight on the stack
  • Stand directly in front of the cable machine, facing away from it and grasp the rope from behind your head with your palms facing inward and drop to your knees
  • Keeping your elbows bent and hands at either head height or shoulder height, crunch down as far as possible
  • Pause, then slowly lower yourself back to the starting position for one rep

CABLE PULL THROUGHS - 3 SETS OF 12 REPS

  • Begin with a rope handle attached to the low pulley of a cable station and grab the ends of the rope in each hand with your back facing the weight stack so that the rope is between your legs
  • With the rope between your legs, bend over at your hips and knees and lower your torso until it’s at a 45-degree angle
  • Initiate the movement by thrusting your hips forward and raising your torso up to the standing position
  • Squeeze your glutes as you push your hips forward for one rep

ABDOMINAL PENDULUM - 3 SETS OF 10 REPS

  • Begin by placing a mat on the floor and laying down on your back
  • Put your arms out at right angles to your body with your palms on the floor
  • Keeping your legs straight, lift your legs off the floor until they are perpendicular to the floor, this is your starting position
  • Twisting only at the hips and keeping your legs straight and feet together, slowly lower your feet to the right as far as possible without losing stability
  • Do not pause, and raise your feet up and across to the left side for one rep