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Author Topic: Core training  (Read 3483 times)
stuckinjersey
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« on: November 12, 2009, 10:35:04 AM »

I know this was a topic last season, well for all this summer and fall it has been my passion (not by choice) after finding two herniated disks in my lower left back.
This all started because on my hour each way commute to work after I was getting numbing and pain in my left leg even though I was just sitting so I complained to the doctor about. Anyway, I have been doing sit-ups, pull-ups and push-ups religiously and it really seems to be helping. I have noticed a lessen of pain and discomfort when sitting and posture improvements as well. Anyway have any other great core training exercises? I'm open since I really just based my plan off Army boot camp ideology basically doing around 40 situps in 10 rep sets, pyramid sets of pushup / pullups with my max number at 90. Feeling young again even though I'm turning 33 this Sunday.
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« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2009, 11:34:28 AM »

First off I hate core exercises but I have tried a few things and always seem to come back to situps / crunches. 

Now can't speak from experience  Wink but I've read a few accounts that belly dancing is a great core workout. 

Here is a small list of things I've tried.

Ab wheel- very good for both your lower back and abs, but you can't arch your lower back into the floor at all or you will start to develop lower back pains.  Which is why I put that aside.

Standing with dumbbell in one hand and leaning to the side you are holding it and the back straight up.  I found that ok but didn't feel like I was getting much of a work out doing that.

Flutter kicks- seem ok, for whatever reason never really do those but have. 

Knee lifts -If you have the equipment (at gym) when you suspend your legs by elbows and forearms.  I like that a lot but a lot of people use that at the gym so I usually skip it, but feel it works pretty good and you can try to twist at the top to get the obliques. 

Lower back machine- gym again, pretty much you are locked in at a 45 degree angle and bend at waist down and use back to get yourself back up.  I like that a lot too and you can hold weight plates at your chest to make an even tougher workout.

Like I said I usually try to find any excuse to skip core strengthening exercises but when I do I usually fall back to the trusty situps and instead of a sprint session I try to do fewer reps in a set but go very slow. 



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jjj4762
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« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2009, 11:41:39 AM »

I'm told "planks" are good for back and core strength
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Tommy T
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« Reply #3 on: November 14, 2009, 11:33:14 AM »

My wife has been struggling with back problems for several years now.  She has been through various PT programs, seen podiatrists, chairopracters, neuro-surgeons, osteopathic surgeons and pain management doctors.  She has had multiple injections and has just had her (first) back surgery.  Her best, ong-term friend has been through the same things and her favorite first cousin has also -- the three of them have had different degrees of relief and/or success with the various regimes.  None of that makes me an expert at anything except care giving but it does make be aware of the problems and options.

Anything involving herniated discs and pinched nerves in the lower back is scary and has a high probability of being a lifelong circumstance that must be taken into account all the time -- daily activities of life (like how you pick up your socks) to choices in extreme sports (like how you land big airs).

Strength and flexibility will be important but avoiding excessive stress across affected areas will be essential.

I'm not about to make any specific recommendations where an indentified back problem has been noted.  I think that serious evaluation of your physical regime by a Physical Therapist with experience in back maintenance and rehab is essential.  A heavy boot camp style regime could very well be as bad as doing nothing.   
 
I will mention one system that might be helpful and is less apt to damage in a bad back case than any of the usual gym or camp routines.

Pilates is a system that includes significant core strengthening.  It is a gentle practice that includes flexibility, core strength, postural adjustment, and balance, all built around careful awareness, concentration and control.  This is not a 400 sit-ups a day regime for young Marines but is a system that has kept many a ballerina dancing well into middle age.  (A huge advantage is that you need to take some classes to get a correct start and most of the classes are dominated by shapely females in good condition who are dedicated to staying in shape.)  Posture, balance and flexibility all work together to protect the back from stresses.  Core strength creates the muscle control to accomplish the other objectives.  Concentration and control assure that you are aware of what is happening and are performing the exercises with perfection -- not brute force.  Pilates is not a New Age/Internet Fad kind of thing.  The practice dates back early 20th or late 19th Century and has a distinguished record, especially in the performing arts.

(Blade Girl practices Pilates.)

Tommy T.
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stuckinjersey
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« Reply #4 on: November 14, 2009, 11:50:01 AM »

Thanks for all the info. Tommy, I'm not doing a real boot camp work out rather just that style of workout. I would hope a Marine could do more than
the amount of pushups I can do Grin All the exercises I'm doing were recommended my doctor, I have thankfully caught this early. My big air career
ended many years ago but due to bad ankles and knee. My brother went through this but much worse his exercising
is what gets the most benefit for him and maintaining it.
I should not this was found last spring and I had scans done, and took a ridigment of ibpro at doc's orders to reduce the
inflamation which helped greatly since it's a very minor buldge.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2009, 01:01:28 PM by stuckinjersey » Logged

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Tommy T
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« Reply #5 on: November 14, 2009, 03:00:41 PM »

I would hope a Marine could do more than
the amount of pushups I can do Grin 

In the VietNam era, one of my tickets out of the draft lottery was working for the Marine Corps (as a civilian) out of HQ in Alexandria, VA.  I was doing studies and reports on matters at the officer/enlisted interface where the policy makers didn't trust either officers or enlisted to be objective and where committees just wouldn't work (rank automatically dominates any effort at cooperation).  I was given the draft status of a veteran and signed an agreement not to enlist.  The colonels that I reported to really thought that the best reward they could give me was a chance to meet the Commandant, then General Green.  The occassion arose when the star performers on a physical fitness test were being presented to General Green.  My civilian partner and I were in the line as the general shook hands with each Rambo type, uniformed Marine and had a short exchange with each.  He came my skinney, short, sport coated partner, looked him in eye and asked "How many pull-ups can you do?"  My partner looked right back, cocked his head and, probably in all truthfulness, answered "Not a one."  The general looked at me, even skinnier and wearing be-bopper style heavy black rimmed glasses, shook my hand vigorously and didn't say a word.

Tommy T.
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« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2009, 01:23:58 PM »

Last year when I was having all my back problems  My DO sent me to a Physical Terapist that was also a Pilates Instructor, she gave me a bunch of moves and also recomended the Windsor Pilates Video.  I've been doing it ever since. 
When I keep up with it, I feel great.  When I stop doing it after about a month my problematic disk starts to bulge and press on my nerves again.
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Dsmith3232
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« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2009, 12:19:22 PM »

Check out Hulu.com. They have a fitness section with a lot of core training.
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