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9 Best Core Exercises You Can Do at Home

9 Best Core Exercises You Can Do at Home

Whether you play sports or perform day-to-day tasks, you need to use your core muscles to go about your daily business. Core muscles are there to spare your spine from too much load and also, they help you transfer force from your upper body to the lower and vice versa.

Contrary to what a large share of people believes, your core not only consists of the abdominal muscles, but it also includes the muscles around your pelvis and in your back.

Your core consists of:

  • Erector Spinae: It is a back muscle that helps you stand straight after you bend over
  • Oblique: Your external oblique and internal oblique enable you to bend or rotate your trunk
  • Rectus Abdominis: The rectus abdominis, also referred to as “six-pack” muscle is there to help you bend forward
  • Multifidus: This muscle in your back plays a vital role in stabilizing the joints in your spine
  • Transverse Abdominis: Your transverse abdominis muscle helps you move your trunk. It also stabilizes your vertebral column

When you keep your core muscles strong and flexible, they will support your spine and stabilize your body properly. To keep them strong and also to enhance your fitness, you should perform core exercises at home.

But, which exercises should you choose? To know the answer, please keep on reading this article. Here, you will find more about the best core-strengthening workouts for almost all fitness levels.

Best Core Exercises for Beginners

If you have not performed workouts for a long time or if you are new in it, you may start with the following moves to strengthen your core muscles.

1. Crunch

Crunch

When it comes to choosing core strengthening exercises for beginners, most fitness experts usually recommend Crunches, the classic ones.  This exercise works well for those, who have back pain.

How to Do It?

  • Lie down on the floor and bend your knees
  • Your feet should be kept flat on the floor
  • Cross both your hands across your chest
  • Lift your upper back while keeping your pelvis, lower back and feet attached with the ground (While lifting your upper back, you should keep your core tight)
  • Lower your upper back slowly and go back to the starting position
  • Repeat it

Benefits

  1. Strengthen your core muscles
  2. Increase the flexibility and mobility of your core muscles
  3. Improve your posture

If you are a beginner or if you find any problem while following the mentioned steps, you may seek help from trainers who have years of experience.

2. Bridge

Bridge

Try Bridge to improve the strength of your core muscle and several other small muscles. This exercise can also help you tone your thighs and butt.

How to Do It?

  • Lie flat on the floor and bend your knees
  • Keep your feet on the floor like you did while performing Crunch exercise
  • Keep both your hands at your side
  • Stiffen your glutes and core
  • Lift your hips and stop when your hips are aligned with your shoulders and knees
  • Hold this position at least for 30 seconds
  • Get back to the starting position and do it again

Benefits

  1. Strengthen your hamstrings (thighs) and gluteus muscles (butt)
  2. Enhance your core stability
  3. Strengthen your abdominal muscles and other muscles of your hip and lower back

3. Plank

Plank

Plank that is a full-body exercise is often considered one of the most effective core workouts at home. This exercise involves maintaining the same position as of a Push-Up (the basic one) for a long time.

How to Do It?

  • To maintain a Plank position, you need to keep your face down with your toes and forearms on the floor
  • Draw your navel toward the spine and thus engage your abdominal muscles. Stiffen your torso and keep it straight (Your body should be in a straight line)
  • Keep your shoulders down
  • Hold this position at least for 10 seconds

Once you start finding this move less difficult, you may increase this time limit up to 60 seconds.

Benefits

  1. Strengthen your core
  2. Improve your posture
  3. Help your core reduce stress on your joints

Intermediate Core Workouts at Home

As you start finding the above-mentioned moves simple, you may try the intermediate moves, discussed in the below section with their benefits. Quickly have a close look at them now.

4. Mountain Climber

Mountain Climber

Fitness experts hardly exclude Mountain Climbers when it comes to making a list of core exercises at home. Yes, this is one of the major core-strengthening moves that comes with several health benefits. To know more about its steps and benefits, please keep on reading.

How to Do It?

  • Get into a plank position which means you have to keep your face down and keep your toes and forearms on the floor
  • Position your hands such a way so that they should remain shoulder-width apart
  • Pull your right knee toward your chest as far as possible
  • Pull out the right knee and do the same with your left knee. This is how; you need to switch your legs
  • Put your hips down and alternate inhaling and exhaling while switching your legs

Benefits

  1. Help you build your cardio endurance
  2. Improve your core strength

Performing Mountain Climbers is almost like having a total-body workout with only one exercise.

5. Warrior Crunch

Warrior Crunch

This Crunch variation is absolutely the right option for them, who have become used to with the simple Crunch move. It works your lower body and core including your glutes, thighs, and quads.

How to Do It?

  • Stand and keep your feet wider than your shoulder width
  • Keep your toes outward and put both your hands behind your head
  • Keep your chest open
  • Stiffen your glutes and core
  • Bend your knees and stop when they are paralleled to the floor
  • Move your right elbow and put it close to your right thigh. While doing this, you should bend your torso to the right side
  • Do the same with your right elbow
  • Repeat it at least for 8 times

Benefits

  1. Strengthen your core muscles and lower body muscles
  2. Improve your flexibility and mobility

6. Bird Dog

Bird Dog

The Bird Dog, one of the best core workouts at home, engages both your back and abdominal muscles. This core strengthening move also challenges your balance, coordination, and stability.

How to Do It?

  • Begin on all fours with hands below your shoulders and knees under your hips
  • Raise and straighten your right leg and keep it to your hip level. While following this step, you need to raise and extend your left hand to your shoulder level. Keep your palm down and hold this position
  • Repeat the same step with your right arm and left leg
  • Repeat it for 8 to 12 times

Benefits

  1. Improve your stability
  2. Help you achieve a neutral spine
  3. Strengthen your hips, core and back muscles
  4. Relieve lower back pain

Advanced Level Core Workouts at Home

Once you master intermediate moves, you may get a step ahead. Try the advanced core exercises and challenge yourself. These moves will help you improve your core strength further by engaging muscles in more effective ways.

7. Side Plank with Rotation

Side Plank with Rotation

It is an advanced version of the simple plank. This move will help you strengthen your shoulders, arms, and obliques.

How to Do It?

  • Lie on the right side and keep your forearm on the floor. Lift your hips and glutes off the floor. Make sure, your right shoulder and feet are in a straight line
  • Stiffen your core
  • Lift your left arm
  • Rotate your torso and keep it close to the floor
  • Keep your left arm under your body
  • Rotate your torso again and raise your left arm up and thus, get back to the starting position
  • Repeat it for 12 times and do the same with your left side and right arm

Benefits

  1. Activate your deep abdominal muscles
  2. Improve your core strength
  3. Shrink and tighten your waistline
  4. Improve your balance

8. Bicycle Crunch

Bicycle Crunch

Your list of core exercises at home will remain incomplete if you do not include the Bicycle Crunch move. With this classic exercise, you can strengthen your abs and workout your core muscles.

How to Do It?

  • Lie on the floor. Your lower back should be attached with the ground
  • Raise your head and shoulders slightly
  • Keep your hands behind your head
  • Raise your right leg off the floor and extend it slowly
  • Lift your left leg, bend your left knee and pull it toward your chest
  • Bring your right elbow toward your left knee. But, make sure they do not touch each other
  • Lower your right elbow and left leg at the same time and repeat the same movement with your left elbow and right knee
  • Repeat it for 10 to 12 times

Benefits

  1. Activate your obliques
  2. Strengthen your core
  3. Develop your abdominal muscles

9. Elbow to Knee Bird Dog

Elbow to Knee Bird Dog

This variation of the simple bird dog can improve your core mobility in the best possible way. To learn the steps of Elbow to knee Bird Log, please dive into the “How to Do It” section.

How to Do it?

  • Begin on all fours with your hands under your shoulders
  • Position yourself in such a way so that your hips remain over your knees
  • Keep your neck, head and back straight. Stiffen your core
  • Raise and extend your left hand and keep it to your shoulder level. Make sure your palm is down
  • Raise and straighten your right leg while extending your left hand
  • Pull your right knee and left elbow closer to each other
  • Get back to the starting position and do it for 12 times
  • Repeat the same movements with your left leg and right hand

Benefits

  1. Increase your muscular endurance and strength
  2. Improve your stability
  3. Strengthen your core

Elbow to Knee Bird Dog is quite useful when it comes to working on your spinal alignment

Final Thoughts

Whether you want to improve your core strength or increase your mobility and flexibility, you can get the best benefits out of these best core exercises at home. But remember, you will get the best benefits only when you follow the right steps. So, obey all the instructions, given by your trainer and follow the right steps to avoid injuries.