This weekend, we’re going to focus on the upper body, core muscles, and posture from a new angle.
I really like exercises that emphasize the core muscle groups, because a strong core builds strength and balance from the inside out. This promotes excellent posture, which in turn enhances breathing, opens the ribcage and chest, and aligns the thoracic vertebrae.
Also, it’s been scientifically proven that a strong center greatly decreases your chances of falling, since it improves balance. So I can’t wait to share an exciting study with you that confirms this.
Your core muscles cover a lot of ground. When you think about it, just about every time you move you engage some or all of the core muscles. Turning, twisting, bending, standing up, sitting down…all involve these central muscles. Even breathing involves the diaphragm, also a core muscle.
If you feel yourself going off balance, it’s your core muscles that kick in to fine-tune your balance and pull you back into an upright stance. These muscles work all the time to keep you standing tall, sitting up straight, and going about your daily tasks.
Today’s exercise, The Core And Rib Strengthener, strengthens the core and improves posture, thereby preventing falls that could result in fracture. As mentioned earlier, research clearly shows that strong core muscles reduce your chance of falling significantly, as we’ll look at in more detail later.
First, let’s get to the exercise.
For this weekend’s challenge, you don’t need anything other than a chair, preferably without arm rests.
- Sit up straight in a chair with your feet flat on the ground. Engage your core muscles – that is, tighten the muscles of your torso and abdomen to pull in your tummy and sit up straight.
- Relax your shoulders and place your hands behind your head. No need to overlap your hands; just your fingertips will touch the back of your head and neck.
- Keeping your knee bent, slowly lift one foot about 12 inches off the ground, and then lower it back down.
- Repeat 10 times (or as many as you feel comfortable with), then switch sides and repeat with the other leg.
- As you lift your foot, keep the other foot flat on the ground.
- Make sure your core muscles stay engaged throughout the exercise.
- Feel free to adjust the height of the lift so it’s comfortable for you – 12 inches is just an estimation.
Over 500 Studies Confirm Core Muscle Strength = Better Balance And Fewer Falls
When German researchers reviewed 582 studies on the topic of core strength, balance, and falls in older adults, they discovered a consistent conclusion: stronger trunk and core muscles correlated with better balance and fewer falls.1
The report went on to note the role of core strength training in enhancing overall balance and functional performance. And of course, exercises like the Core And Rib Strengthener are just the thing to achieve that strong trunk and core that prevent falls that could result in fracture.
Proper posture is an integral part of this picture as well. Strong central muscles are essential for healthy, youthful posture that promotes balance and prevents kyphosis, the rounding of the upper back also known as Dowager’s Hump.
If you have the Densercise™ Epidensity Training System, then you know how many “Densercises” are devoted to core strength training, balance, and posture. That’s not all, of course. Densercise™ offers many targeted moves that strengthen bones and muscles from every possible angle.
Regular exercise offers so many benefits; better balance, improved posture, and decreased risk of falls and fracture are just a few. And Densercise™ offers them all!
Enjoy your weekend!
1 Granacher, U., et al. “The importance of trunk muscle strength for balance, functional performance, and fall prevention in seniors: a systematic review.” Sports Medicine. July 2013. 43(7):627-41. Doi: 10.1007/s40279-013-0041-1. Web. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23568373