Tag Archive: abs

If his transverse abdominus doesn't activate quickly enough when catching this punt, he could end up with some major low back pain

Building a strong core is important because the core has to stabilize the spine.  If the spine isn’t supported, then we are extremely limited in what movements we can do.  Just ask anybody with low back pain.

A strong core largely comes from motor control.  A lot of people who have low back pain have a dysfunctional transverse abdominus (TA).  The TA is extremely important to spinal stabilization because it acts like your body’s own weight belt.  Often, the problems of low back pain result from the TA taking too long to activate.  In a normal person, the TA should activate first to stabilize the spine before any type of movement is initiated.  In a lot of people with low back pain, their other muscles will react first and the TA will activate too late to protect the spine.  As a result, your spine won’t have the stability that it needs, and you will get hurt. Continue reading


Get Abs By Not Working Abs?

Marianne Kane from http://www.myomytv.com/

It seems like each time I walk into the gym, I see people doing ab exercises.  Situps, crunches, hanging leg raises, etc.  Obviously, a good set of abdominal muscles is extremely important to our self-image since that’s what all of the fitness magazine models have.  We all seem to want to look like Marianne Kane or Greg Plitt, but how do we do that?  And why don’t our ten sets of crunches seem to be working?  It makes sense that if you want a more defined arm, you work out arms.  So, if you want a six pack, you should do a lot of ab exercises, right?

Well, the interesting thing is that working out abs directly without making the rest of the body a greater focus is counter-productive to actually getting abs.  The idea that working out a specific body part results in losing fat on that specific body part is physiologically impossible.  The body loses and gains fat as an entire body system.  Fat is simply energy storage, and your body has evenly distributed out its energy storage reserves.  You can do thousands of sit ups, but you won’t lose any more fat there than on your hips, thighs, and buttocks. Continue reading