I wrote an article for this month’s issue of Tae Kwon Do Times focusing on the importance of core training for the martial artist.
In this article, this is how I refer to the “core” –
“The “core” is the torso, extending from the shoulders to the pelvis. It is the body’s center of power. When we refer to core strength, it is the intrinsic muscles that lie deep within the torso. These muscles attach to the spine and pelvis and include the transversus abdominis, and the muscles of the pelvic floor in the lower portion of the torso and the latissimus dorsi and obliques in the middle and upper torso. Many experts also include the muscles that surround the scapula as key core muscles.”
“This area is sometimes called “the powerhouse” because movement power and stability originate here. In addition to being the source of powerful, centered movement, the core muscles also provide a strong base of stability. The muscles of the core hold the body stable and balanced, whether it is stationary or in dynamic motion”
No need to findthe article on the newstand, I’ve posted it in my blog if you would like to read it in its entirety 🙂
The core can be defined as the torso body tube and has even been extended as far as the neck to knees. It is comprised of all the intrinsic/local muscles that support the structure as well as the extrinsic/global musculature that allows for movement. The core is quite simply everything but the limbs.
Jason, the way your company separates the core into upper and lower portions make good sense to me.
Don’t know if you have had experience with pilates, however, many of the movements involve stabilization of one portion of core (let’s say the the lower core) while the upper core performs the mobilization portion of the movement.
As an example, there is a movement called “the breaststroke” which involves back extension (upper core – mobilization) lower core provides stability.
Thanks for your post.
The core as a general term i use it to describe the entire torso, and specifically but not limited to the mid section. i use the term brace your core with my clients which depending on the exercise can mean any part of the torso. For example while i have them performing a dead-lift i say tighten up your core and not let it move, meaning the spine should remain in neutral, with the movement being performed with the legs. so they would keep their scapula’s squeezed back abdominal area tight as well as there lower back in order to prevent that spine from rounding.