FLEXIBILITY, BALANCE and CORE TRAINING

FLEXIBILITY, BALANCE and CORE TRAINING

Flexibility, Balance and Core training, all three of these topics are completely related. Flexibility generally relates to specific muscles, tendons and ligaments. Muscles can be very flexible, but tendons and ligaments are not, because they have to hold muscle to the bone (tendons), ligaments (bone to bone). You don’t need to have gymnastic flexibility,  just the amount to do daily tasks comfortably or perform your given sport. We have seen huge bodybuilders do the splits, so much for bodybuilders are muscle bound! Also 600 lb sumo wrestlers do the splits! If you train with a short range of motion you will adapt and shorten the muscle. If you sit all day you will do the same. Put your arm in a sling and your elbow will tighten in 24 hours. You need to maintain a balance between your strength and flexibility.

Every joint in your body should have that balance. When you have that balance you will enjoy a great quality of life and achieve a high level of your given sport. Ever notice how flexible babies and young kids are, then because of our lifestyles we slowly get less flexible. It doesn’t have to happen. As we age we normally get a little less flexible but not much, unless we do it to ourselves. The saying is flexibility knocks the heck out of aging! So we should train functionally almost always standing and almost no machines if possible. Using the most of your body, this is where the core comes in, thru a safe range of motion with total control of the movement. You should always be aware of tight muscles and joints to address, to maintain symmetry which helps to achieve a higher training load for your sport without injury and maintain a higher quality of life.

FLEXIBILITY, BALANCE and CORE TRAINING

The core as it is called today, we used to call it your trunk muscles whatever! has a primary purpose of stabilization. These muscles are mainly your abs, lo-back, side of your lo-back, hips, upper legs front and back. Very important is your deepest ab muscle your transverse abdominis which looks like a corset, your internal weight belt. When it is drawn in tight it locks your core in place and puts your spine in its strongest position, where you can achieve maximum force. Your spine is super strong when it is in this position. When you are lifting weights or playing a ground based sport or just moving the furniture our body stabilizes as a whole. When your core muscles are braced tight you can achieve maximum force in a given sport or have great balance.

Some facts taken from mel c. siff are the body is a dynamic linked system of interactive muscle groups. There is an optimal ratio of trunk flexion and trunk extension. The trunk must be trained in flexion, extension and rotation. Resisted back exercise is vital for producing trunk stability. The majority of your muscles are in your posterior chain, back including all parts of your trapezius, triceps, glutes, hamstrings and calves, the most important being your lo-back, glutes and upper hamstrings and a bullet-proof core. Because of our current lifestyle, to much sitting our posterior chain goes dormant and becomes overstretched and the anterior muscles become tight, so we need to basically stretch anterior and strength-train posterior muscles plus develop strong core musculature. The core developed, in flexion, extension, rotation and isometrics which is used in balance and many weightlifting exercises i.e. squats, deadlifts, bench-pressing, overhead lifts, olympic lifts etc.

So you can see the symmetrical flexibility, mobility, core-strength and balance are interchangeable and work as one unit and are equally important for everyday life and achieving a high-level in any given sport. Let All goals fitness help you determine what specifics you need and the right program for you individually, for quality of life or reaching a high level of any given sport!

master trainer cueing two clients performing flexibility planks on stabilitY ball