• Helen Phillips

Why Worry about Your Core?


As runners we’ve all heard that we need ‘a strong core’ , but why is this so important and how can you get a strong core.

Why Worry about Your Core?

Core muscles include the groups of abdominal muscles, muscles of the lower back as well as in the buttocks, hips and pelvis. These are the muscles that keep your torso upright when you run and reduce twisting and wobbling when you’re moving your arms & legs.

Having a strong core gives you a solid foundation for strength and efficient movement in the rest of your body.

Running is a linear ‘move forward’ motion, but whilst you’re moving forward there’s still a lot of twisting and movement going on in the rest of your body. Having a strong core helps you to keep your torso stable and direct motion and energy into an efficient forward motion.

It’s particularly important that marathon runners have good core strength. If your core isn’t strong and stable you’ll move more in your mid-section whilst running which leads to a breakdown in your running form. When you run with a less efficient style, you use up energy, which hastens fatigue, slows you down (as your running is less efficient), and you’ll also increase your likelihood of injury.

If you get lower back-ache or aches and pains in your shoulders during or after your long runs it’s likely that you’re running with compromised form. Building up your core strength will help you to build up and maintain good posture, and reduce the chances of these aches and pains.

Having a strong core also improves your stability and balance. So if you’re accident prone, and prone to tripping up you’ll recover quickly from missteps whilst running.

Exercises that are great for building up core strength include planks, Swiss ball workouts and Pilates.

If you’re training for a marathon right now, make sure you’re focusing on your core for good form, efficient running and great racing!

So now you know all about why you should focus on your core for strong running, why don't you join my 7 Strength & Conditioning Sets for Success Challenge.

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