Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Core Workout :D

My Favorite Core Moves:

NOTE: I take no credit for coming up with these or the images, they are all from other websites which I have linked to within this blog post. I just picked out my fav's :D


Ball Pass
Begin by lying on your back with the legs straight up (bend them if needed) and holding the ball straight up over the body. (A) Put the ball between the feet, squeezing them to keep the ball in place, and lower both the arms and legs down towards the floor. (B) Bring them back up and take the ball in your hands.  (C)  Lower the arms and legs down towards the floor again and continue, exchanging the ball between the hands and feet for 8-12 reps.

Ball Plank with Leg Lift
Get into plank position with the feet/shins resting on the ball, hands under shoulders and abs contracted.  Keeping the core tight, lift the right leg off the ball a few inches and lower.  Lift the left leg off the ball and lower.  Continue alternating legs for 8-10 reps on each side.

Plank on the Ball

Begin lying on the floor with the legs straight up (knees slightly bent if needed) and hold the ball behind the head. Lower the legs a few inches and then bring the ball up as you bring the legs in, touching the ball to the toes in a full crunch.  Lower and repeat for 10-12 reps.

Regular Plank  AND Plank w/Arm Lift

Regular Plank is pretty self explanatory 

Starting at the top of a pushup position, bend your elbows and lower yourself down until you can shift your weight from your hands to your forearms. Your body should form a straight line. Brace your abs (imagine someone is about to punch you in the gut) and hold for 60 seconds. If you can't make it to 60 seconds, hold for 5 to 10 seconds and rest for 5 seconds, continuing for 1 minute. Focus on form: Don't drop your hips or raise your butt.  

Plank w/Arm Lifts (a little more advanced)

Get into the plank position (toes and forearms on the floor, body lifted). Your body should form a straight line (A). Brace your abs and carefully shift your weight to your right forearm. Extend your left arm in front of you (B) and hold for 3 to 10 seconds. Slowly bring your arm back in. Repeat with the right arm. That's 1 rep. Do 2 or 3 sets of 5 to 10 reps, resting for 1 minute between sets.

Basic Side Plank

Lie on your right side with your legs straight. Prop yourself up with your right forearm so your body forms a diagonal line. Rest your left hand on your hip. Brace your abs and hold for 60 seconds. If you can't make it to 60 seconds, hold for 5 to 10 seconds and rest for 5; continue for 1 minute. Be sure your hips and knees stay off the floor. 

Side Plank w/Rotation:

In a right-side plank position (A), brace your abs and reach your left hand toward the ceiling (B). Slowly tuck your left arm under your body and twist forward until your torso is almost parallel to the floor (C). Return to the side plank. That's 1 rep. Do 2 or 3 sets of 5 to 10 reps on each side, resting for 1 minute between sets.


Next Couple are from:
(These are more ab-specific and less general core)

Knee Tucks
  1. Get into a pushup position with the ball under the shins/ankles (easier) or the tops of the feet (harder).
  2. Make sure the body is straight, back flat and the abs engaged.
  3. Roll the ball in, bending the knees towards the chest as you squeeze the abs.
  4. Try not to push back with your arms but, instead, keep all the movement in the knees.
  5. Don't collapse the back as you roll the knees in.
  6. Return to start and repeat for 10-16 reps. 

Ball Pikes

Ball pikes are an advanced version of the knee tucks shown previously and are very challenging. You can always modify the move by keeping the knees slightly bent or by shortening the range of motion and only lifting the hips a few inches, lifting higher as you get stronger. The key to making this move challenging is to use the abs to draw the hips up, rolling the feet on top of the ball.
  1. Get into a pushup position with the ball under the shins/ankles (easier) or the tops of the feet (harder).
  2. Make sure the body is straight, back flat and the abs engaged.
  3. Squeeze the abs and lift the hips up towards the ceiling, rolling the feet on top of the ball.
  4. Keep the legs straight for more of a challenge, ending in a straight-leg pike with the toes on the ball.
  5. Return to start and repeat for 10-16 reps. 

Rotations on the Ball

This advanced move not only works the core, with a focus on the obliques, it also targets balance, stability and flexibility. To keep this move safe, keep the exercise slow and controlled and keep the knees in line with the shins and ankles rather than twisting them to one side or the other.
  1. Lie with ball under shoulders, neck and head, hips lifted in a bridge position.
  2. Hold a medicine ball or light weight straight up over the chest.
  3. Tighten your abs and rotate your torso to the left as far as you can, allowing the hips and legs to move naturally with the motion.
  4. Rotate back up and then rotate to the other side.
  5. Repeat for 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps (one rep includes both the right and left sides). 

Side Bridge w/Hip Drops

The side bridge is an advanced exercise, particularly if you do the move on the forearm (another option is to balance on the hand). Adding a hip lift really challenges the obliques, making this a great overall core exercise. You can modify by keeping one knee on the floor or by taking the feet wide instead of stacked on top of one another.
  1. Lie on your side balanced on the forearm and feet.
  2. The hips and feet should be stacked on top of one another.
  3. Holding the torso steady, slowly contract your abs and lower the hip toward the floor (you don't have to touch).
  4. Avoid sinking into the shoulder.
  5. Bring the hip back up and repeat for 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps on each side. 

Next are from:

Abdominal ball thrust
Boosts abdominal power and core control, plus upper arm strength
3-5 sets x 10 reps
You'll need a partner for this. Sit in the crunch position and hold a light medicine ball above your head with your arms outstretched. Holding the ball, keep your arms above your head and lower yourself to the floor behind you. Then perform a sit-up and throw the ball from your chest to your partner. They should then return the ball to you.

Russian twist
Boosts core muscle control, plus abdominal and hip flexor strength
3-5 sets x 20-30 reps

Sit in the crunch position holding a small medicine ball. A good starting weight would be 2-6kg. Rotate your trunk while holding the ball, but try to maintain a straight back. At the same time, perform a cycling action by straightening your leg in the direction of rotation.

Next from:

Hamstring Roll (for that perfect butt! :D)

Lay down with your back on the floor and put your heels on a stability ball. Lift your pelvis so your body is straight and in a pike position, arms on the floor at your side helping to stabilize you. Pull your legs towards you, rolling the ball as you go, until you are in the position shown in the picture. Roll the ball back to the starting position and perform 12 times.

Next from:

Oblique Lift
In sidelying position on the ball with leg bent, fists on the temples, tighten obliques (muscles around the waist) and lift torso off the ball, pulling the ribcage toward the hip. Repeat and switch sides.

Last from:

Ball Pass

  • Lie on your back holding an exercise ball and lift your feet so your shins are parallel to the floor.
  • Lift your head, neck, and shoulders, and place the ball between your legs.
  • Now lower your legs and reach your arms back.
  • Come back up and grab the ball.
  • Continue to pass the ball back and forth from your hands to your legs 10 to 12 times.

Okay not last, but not everyone has TRX bands lying around but I LOVE them. I can't seem to find any websites though with a list of their exercises so I guess you'll just have to take my word for it lol.


  1. Those are a lot of exercises! I usually just stick with the planks. Planks and push ups. The rest is just running for me!

  2. I haven't tried the Ball Pikes but have heard they are good and tough! That is a lot of exercises. Make me feel lazy. LOL. I liked doing regular planks and push-ups and some ab work with the medicine ball.

  3. Yeah I never do them all in one workout usually I do a circuit of 6 exercises :D