How to Strengthen Core Muscles with Chiropractic

Chiropractors are often asked by patients to strengthen core muscles. The core is comprised of muscles that help stabilize movement for the entire body. If these muscles are weak, other muscles will take over to do the job and this can lead to back pain and injury.

Luckily, core strengthening is easy and can be done at home. Try these four level 1 beginner core exercises to ease into core muscle training:

Abdominal Crunch

When most people think of core strengthening exercises, they immediately envision ab workouts and six-pack abs. However, abdominals are only one part of the system of muscles that make up the core. A strong core is essential for stability and balance, which makes almost all physical activity easier to perform.

Your core includes not only your abdominal muscles, but also the oblique muscles that run on the sides of your trunk, as well as muscles in your lower back and hips. Keeping your core strong helps you move more easily in any direction and on any surface. It also reduces the risk of back pain by minimizing strain on your spine and other muscles and joints.

The standard crunch is an important exercise for building the rectus abdominis, the muscle that runs along the front of your stomach. This is an essential muscle for stabilizing your spine, and it’s the main focus of many abdominal strength exercises. It’s important to know that crunches are only part of a complete core-strengthening routine, but they can be a good place to start.

Core-strengthening exercises can be difficult for beginners to get started with because the movements are usually slow, and they require a great deal of concentration. If you try to progress too quickly, you could end up creating muscle imbalances or losing control of your core muscles. The telltale signs of this are the abdomen failing to stay hollow or the spine deviating to one side.

Lie down on the floor or an exercise mat and plant your feet, about hip-width apart. Place your arms across your chest, but don’t contract the neck or raise your head. Tighten your core muscles and inhale as you slowly raise your upper body off the floor. Inhale again as you return to the starting position.

You can add extra challenge to this basic crunch by holding a plate weight or kettlebell in your hands as you do the exercise. You can also do a variation of this exercise by extending your right arm off the floor in front of you as you raise the hips off the floor.


If you’re looking to strengthen your core muscles, squats are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Adding them to your routine helps you stay in better shape and prevents back pain by strengthening your core and hip area. In fact, a study found that strength training with squats can increase bone density, which is essential for postmenopausal women who are at risk for osteoporosis.

The squat is an excellent exercise that can be done from just about anywhere, but you want to make sure your knees don’t go past the toes and that you keep your chest out and spine straight. This position puts the most pressure on your glutes and core muscles, so be careful not to overdo it. Try doing three sets of 10-15 repetitions each.

Another great core exercise is the bird dog, which can be performed while seated on the floor. You can cross your arms over your chest or extend them out in front of you to help maintain balance and stability. To perform the bird dog, start in a tabletop position, then shift your weight into your heels to sit down slowly and slowly lower yourself until your legs are parallel with the floor.

The bridge is a great exercise to do while lying on the floor and it will help to strengthen your back and hip muscles. This exercise will also strengthen the erector spinae muscle, which is a large group of muscles that run along the spine. Performing this exercise can help to improve your posture and boost sporting performance.

When most people think of core strength, they often envision abdominal crunches and six-pack abs, but those are only a small part of what makes up the core muscles. There are many other important muscle groups that work together to support your posture and spinal curvature. This is why our chiropractors emphasize the importance of doing core-strengthening exercises and recommend them to all of our patients.

If you are having trouble with low back pain, or if you’re just looking for ways to help prevent it from happening in the future, contact us today! Our experienced and caring chiropractic team can help you get back on track with a safe and effective treatment plan.

Hip Flexors

The hip flexors are a group of muscles that, as their name implies, flex (or bend) your hip. They cross over the hip and attach to either your pelvis or spine, so when they contract, your thigh moves up towards your body. This is a movement pattern that occurs constantly when you walk, run, sit, and even squat. These muscles are a major contributor to the lower back’s stability and posture maintenance, so it’s no wonder that they tighten and weaken when you adopt a sedentary lifestyle.

Tight hip flexors often lead to back pain and anterior pelvic tilt. They can also cause your knees to feel tight and strained. If you’re experiencing these issues, your first instinct might be to Google “hip flexor stretches.” But pigeon pose and happy baby — the type of stretches that will likely come up on your search results — don’t actually solve the problem. In fact, they may make the problem worse.

Instead, try the seated butterfly stretch. To perform it, lie on your back with the soles of both feet positioned on the floor and your knees bent. Gently stretch forward from the hips, keeping your head back and shoulders relaxed. Hold the position for 30 seconds.

This exercise strengthens the gluteal muscles and stretches the hip flexors, making it a powerful addition to any core-muscle training regimen. However, it’s important to remember that core-muscle strength should always be paired with proper form and gradual progress. If you progress too quickly, other muscles will begin to take over and the core’s function will be compromised.

Developing a strong core is essential for your wellbeing, everyday good health, and the prevention and alleviation of back pain. While some lower back issues require medical treatment, the majority of cases can be resolved with a few simple exercises and consistent practice at home. The key to success is combining the power of chiropractic with targeted strength-training exercises. If you’re looking for a trusted chiropractor to help you get started, contact any of the Anaheim chiropractors, if you’re in the area.

Leg Raises

While not as popular as planks, leg raises are a great core-building exercise. They primarily target the abs (rectus abdominis), but also work out the hip flexors and obliques. This makes them a good alternative to planks for people who have trouble with them or just want to add some variety to their core workout.

The best way to do a leg raise is to lie down on an exercise mat or workout bench with your hands beneath your lower buttocks to help support your pelvis. Raise your legs so they are at a 60 to 70-degree angle with the torso. Hold this position for a few seconds and then slowly lower your legs back to the starting position. Repeat for 3 sets of 15 repetitions per leg.

For a more challenging variation on the classic leg lift, try raising your legs above your head and bringing them to an overhead position before lowering them. This variation will work out the abs and the obliques in particular, which can be tricky to target with other exercises.

One of the most important things to remember when doing this exercise is to keep the movement smooth and fluid. Many people make the mistake of jerking their legs up or down, which takes away from the focus on the abdominal muscles. They also often arch their lower back when lowering their legs, which adds pressure to the spine and reduces the effectiveness of the exercise.

A strong core is essential for wellbeing, everyday good health, and posture. It is also vital for preventing and relieving back pain. Chiropractors can use gentle manipulation to strengthen the core muscles, which will improve both the function of the muscle and the surrounding joints.

By strengthening the core muscles, you can prevent back pain and other injuries in the body. While everyone thinks about the stomach and back muscles when it comes to the core, there are many other important muscles that are just as crucial. If these muscles are weak, they can pull from other areas in the body for structure, which can cause strain and lead to injury.

By Patty
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