Step 1 – Posture
Good posture is essential for core activation – if your posture is slumped your core abdominal muscles won’t work as well. Sitting tall with your chest lifted, spine tall and normal inward curve in your low back is the best position for core activation.
Step 2 – Find and Feel Your Core Muscles
Your core muscles run from the front of your abdomen, around your waist into your spine. Deep abdominal muscles work to assist spinal and pelvic control. Ideally, these muscles should work with your pelvic floor muscles.
The best position to locate your deep abdominal muscles is just inside your pelvic bones. If you wrap your thumbs and forefingers around your waist, your fingers will rest directly above your core abdominal muscles, just inside your pelvic bones. This is the best place to feel your deep abdominal core muscles as they are the deepest of your layered abdominal muscles.
It can be challenging to feel the gentle tension created when your core muscles are correctly activated. Ideally, you should feel a gentle tension or tightness under your fingers with correct core activation.
Step 3 – Activate Your Core
Gently draw in your lower abdominal wall towards your spine – this is slow and controlled. Remember this is a very subtle and gentle contraction; it should not be too strong or forceful. Try to breathe normally during all exercises for the core.
Commence with up to 10-second deep abdominal muscle holds. Progress the duration of your holds as your core control improves with practice.