Summer is here, which means that everyone is putting in a little extra core training in preparation for beach days and pool parties. We all talk about working on our “core” or our “abs” often, but what does that really mean?
In this blog post, we will unpack the mystery behind the six-pack (well, at least from an exercise perspective…as you know, nutrition plays a key role in muscle definition as well). We will also offer you a summer sizzler core workout that will fire up all your abdominal muscles!
First, we’ll lay out the muscles and movements involved in core training (focusing on abdominal and back muscles), and then we’ll outline the workout.
Major Movements & Muscles Involved in Core Training
The major movements or actions of the trunk are spinal stabilization, compression of the abdomen, trunk flexion, trunk extension, trunk rotation, lateral trunk flexion.
The major muscles involved in these movements are multifidi, transverse abdominis (TA), rectus abdominis (RA; your six pack muscle), erector spinae (ES), and internal and external obliques (IO and EO).
In order to effectively train our core muscles, we must move in a multi-planar fashion and use the sagittal (forward and back), frontal (side-to-side), and transverse (rotational) planes. Shaping a solid core is about so much more than doing 1,000 crunches (sagittal plane) - - we need to be intentional about balancing our core work in order to support our everyday activities…not to mention, balanced core work will also make for better abdominal aesthetics.
Here are the trunk movements associated with each plane and the primary muscles involved in each movement:
Summer Sizzler Core Workout
Now that we know how to move and what muscles are responsible for each movement, we are ready to assemble a sizzling core workout!!! We will demo this workout during a Fitness Friday broadcast, so if you are not sure how to perform the exercises, please catch us live at 8 am PT or watch the replay on the MYZONE Moves YouTube Channel.
We have selected seven exercises that will hit all major core (abdominal and back) muscles! Perform six sets of all seven exercises for the specified repetitions/duration and aim for the target heart rate zone. Perform these sets in rounds - - go through all seven exercises in a row on the first set, and then repeat for sets two through six.
Give this Summer Sizzler Core Workout a go and let us know if you felt the burn!!! Use the hashtags #effortrewarded and #myzonemoves when you post your workout pics!
For more tips on how to use the MYZONE® heart rate monitor, follow us during Fitness Fridays on Facebook Live (subscribe on MYZONE’s Facebook Page) – 8 am PT, 11 am ET, and check out our MYZONE® Moves Podcast on iTunes or Google Play.
Keep moving forward!