I've had three C-sections and have no abdominal tone at all. Would these new classes on core training help me?
Core stability comes from the coordination of function within the soft tissues of the spine, pelvis, and hips. The goal of core stability is to increase stiffness in the spine to protect it. Core strength allows the spine to withstand movement and force and thus prevent back injury.
The abdominal muscles are a key part of the "core" ... but they aren't the only muscles involved.
Recent studies have shown that it's possible to increase the pressure within the abdominal area without using the abdominal muscles. You can do this by contracting the diaphragm and the pelvic floor muscles at the same time. The effect is to increase pressure within the abdomen. This in turn increases trunk stiffness.
Abdominal muscle training is still important. It's never too late to improve muscle tone and strength...even after the muscles have been cut during a C-section. It will take at least six to eight weeks of consistent exercise and using correct postures.
John D. Willson, MSPT, et al. Core Stability and Its Relationship to Lower Extremity Function and Injury. In Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. September 2005. Vol. 13. No. 5. Pp. 316-325.
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