It’s true what they say: the “six-pack” can contribute to an efficient core workout. But when it comes to core training, having washboard abs isn’t everything—at least not in terms of performance and function!
Core stability and strength can refer to various things depending on the situation. It includes numerous muscle groups and planes of motion, all of which cooperate to either oppose undesirable trunk movement in response to an external force, to transfer force from the lower to the upper body, or to serve as a stable base from which to move the arms and legs during athletic efforts.
Having strong core muscles isn’t just important for strength, practising these core strengthening exercises is vital for optimal performance throughout fitness and ideal for maintaining spine and back health. So without further ado, let’s get to it with our 4 best core exercises for beginners!
What are the 4 Best Core Exercises For Beginners? (With Variations)
Plank Position Core Exercises
Beginners (Plank Leg Lift)
The traditional plank workout is great, but plank leg lifts really up the ante. Leg rises, also known as leg lifts, can increase the intensity and engage more of your lower-body and abdominal muscles. Get ready to feel that burn in your booty!
- With your hands shoulder-width apart, begin in the plank posture. Your hips, ankles, and shoulders all need to be in a straight line.
- Keep your abs tight and lift your right leg up until it is around hip height. Keep your right foot extended.
- Pause to absorb the burn! Then after, bring your right leg back to the ground.
- Repeat using your left leg. Aim for 3 sets of 10 reps, switching legs between sets. If that’s too difficult, begin with less reps and increase them gradually. Too simple? More sets please!
Advanced (Superman Plank)
Although the Superman Plank won’t turn you into a superhero (hate to disappoint), it will unquestionably strengthen your core to the level of Superman’s. Additionally, it may possibly aid in enhancing your stability and improves balance along the journey.
- Start in a high plank position with your arms straight, your wrists beneath your shoulders, and your legs shoulder-width apart or a little wider for improved balance.
- To prevent your lower back from arching, maintain your back totally flat and tighten your abdominal muscles.
- Lift your left leg back and extend your right arm forward. Bring your arm and leg back down after holding for two to five seconds.
- Change sides and lift your right leg up and back while extending your left arm forward. Hold once more before switching.
Top Tip: Keep your active arm and leg parallel to the floor at all times. When trying to raise them above parallel, the hips frequently sink downward, which can strain the lower back.
Side Plank Core Exercises
Beginners (Side Plank Dips)
This side plank version also works your glutes, upper back lats, and shoulder muscles in addition to your obliques.
- Begin in the standard side plank position.
- Keep your top hand on your top hip while raising your top arm straight above you.
- Return to the starting position after lowering your hips until they touch the ground.
- After 10 to 15 repetitions, rotate to the opposite side.
- Start with one set per side for beginners and increase to three sets per side as the exercise becomes more manageable.
Advanced (Side Plank Crunch)
- Begin by lying on your right side, lifting your torso, keeping your legs long, and placing your feet close together. Place your left hand on your hip while keeping your body straight and abs firm.
- When you do these crunches, you will engage your entire core as well as your obliques. Bring your top arm’s elbow and top leg’s knee in to tap them together.
Make sure you breathe as you move and avoid letting your body sag in the middle. You will want to stay in a straight line throughout.
One traditional core workout is the crunch. Your abdominal muscles, which are a part of your core, are specifically worked out.
- Lean back and lie down. Your feet should be placed on the ground hip-width apart. Kneel down and cross your arms over your chest. Inhale while tightening your abs.
- Exhale and raise your upper body while maintaining a relaxed neck and head.
- After taking a breath, reset your position.
You’ll have to engage your core and concentrate on your balance to be stable because the exercise calls for you to make a “V” shape with your legs in the air. The V-sit is a unique core exercise that works in this fashion, making it the ideal exercise to do if you want to push yourself.
- Engage your core muscles while seated on a mat, then slowly lean back a few inches. Lift your legs slowly into a tabletop position in the air.
- Straighten your arms in front of you until they are parallel to the mat. Extend your legs straight up to a 45-degree angle while maintaining a strong core, creating a “V” shape with your body.
- If you still feel stable in this position, try raising your arms up toward the ceiling. You can always choose to leave them directly in front of you. For ten seconds, maintain this posture. Keep the inner thighs compressed together, the abs drawn in, and the shoulders relaxed.
- Return to the beginning posture by letting your arms and legs go.
Twist Core Exercises
Beginner (Twisting Crunch)
The twisting crunch is a straightforward yet highly efficient workout for the core’s oblique and abdominal muscles. Apart from a bench, which is optional, and a soft surface, you don’t need any other equipment. Therefore, it’s a really practical exercise that you can perform anywhere and still see results!
- Set your hands next to your ears. Bring your right knee into your chest, crunch your torso off the floor, and turn to your right side.
- While raising your left knee into your chest, turn to your left side. Repeat for 15-20 reps.
Advanced (Russian Twist)
The Russian twist is a useful exercise for developing your shoulders and core. This exercise is well-liked by athletes because it promotes rotational movement, which is common in sports. Although it may seem like a straightforward manoeuvre, much strength and assistance are needed.
- As you raise your feet off the ground while maintaining your knees bent, anchor into your sit bones.
- Your body and thighs should form a V shape as you lengthen and straighten your spine at a 45-degree angle from the floor.
- Interlace your fingers or clasp your hands together as you extend your arms straight in front of you.
- Turn to the right, then to the centre, then to the left by engaging your abs.
- Perform two or three sets of 8 to 16 repetitions.
Best Core Exercises For Beginners FAQs
How do I strengthen my core for beginners?
To strengthen the abdominal muscles, try exercises like side plank, front plank, vertical leg crunches, flutter kicks, Russian twists and the hollow body hold and hang. A stronger lower back and improved balance are both benefits of a strong core.
How long should you do core workouts?
Working your core is essential if you want to develop balanced strength, but it doesn’t have to take a long time. In fact, a 10-minute core workout might be an excellent approach to exercise those muscles and gain the advantages of increased strength.
What happens if I train abs every day?
Your abs require a break just like every other muscle does! Although you shouldn’t train your abs every day, you can stimulate them during your warm-up with exercises like planks, inchworms, and other balancing and stabilising drills.
How long does it take to strengthen the core?
Depending on the exercises you’re doing, it can take anywhere from four to eight weeks to specifically develop and build your ab muscles—not necessarily see them.
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