Accidents can happen anywhere, regardless of how cautious one is. However, maintaining physical fitness and nurturing strong core muscles can play a crucial role in both preventing injuries and expediting recovery when injuries do occur. In this blog, we cover some core strengthening exercises to help you in the future. But first, let us begin with which muscles make up the core.
What Makes Up The Core Muscles?
While many associate core muscles with just the abdominal muscles or the “six-pack”, they encompass a broader set of muscles. These include:
- Rectus abdominis (or the 'six-pack muscles')
- Transverse abdominis (your lower abs)
- Inner and outer obliques (located on your sides)
- Multifidus (deep muscles in your lower back)
- Erector spinae (running along your spine)
- Diaphragm (at the base of your ribs)
- Pelvic floor muscles (contributing to continence, and playing a role in pregnancy and childbirth for women)
Additionally, the muscles in your back, chest, and glutes are also part of your core muscles.
If your core muscles are robust, they can reduce the likelihood of damaging other soft tissues like ligaments, tendons, or spinal discs in the event of a work-related or car accident injury. Building and maintaining strong core muscles is a proactive approach to safeguarding against injury and enhancing your recovery should an accident occur.
Effective Core Strength Exercises
The following core-strengthening exercises can be employed both before and after an accident, contributing to reduced recovery time in case of a workplace or auto accident injury:
- Lie face up with your legs and arms extended.
- Tighten your abs to push your lower back into the ground.
- Lift your legs and upper back by pointing your toes whilst squeezing your thighs and glutes together. Reaching your hands up to meet your feet. Your body will form a V shape.
- Slowly lower your arms and legs to the starting position.
- Position your forearms on the floor under your shoulders.
- Extend your legs behind you with your toes supporting your body weight.
- Maintain a straight line from your shoulders to your heels.
- Keep your head and neck in a neutral position, in a way that you look down at your hands.
- Hold this position as long as you can.
- Side Bend
- Begin in a side plank with your hand and arm under your shoulder.
- Modify your foot placement to your preference.
- Dip your hips toward the ground and then raise them back up.
- Repeat on both sides.
- Half-Kneeling Chop
- Begin on your knees, with one leg extended a few feet in front and bent at a 90-degree angle. The foot must lay flat on the ground.
- Hold a light dumbbell near the knee on the ground.
- Lift the weight diagonally toward the ceiling on the opposite side, twisting your abs.
- Keep your hips facing forward, with your core muscles rotating.
- Lower the weight back down by your hip.
- Repeat, then switch to the other side.
- Leg Raise
- Lie face up with your legs extended.
- Place your hands at your sides or under your hips.
- Raise your legs toward the ceiling, keeping them straight.
- Lower them, stopping a few inches from the floor.
- Ensure your lower back remains flat on the ground throughout the exercise.
Investing in core strength through these exercises can be a valuable step toward preventing injuries and facilitating recovery. Remember that a strong core supports your overall musculoskeletal system. If you ever face a work-related accident or auto injury, you'll be better prepared for a smoother recovery process.
But should you find yourself in such an injury, opt for premium treatment and expert guidance at HEMA. Our doctors are board-certified and experienced in musculoskeletal injuries. To know more or book an appointment, reach out to the experts at HEMA right away!