Increasing Core Stiffness For A Happy Spine

Proximal stability is critical for distal athleticism. Core stability gives us the ability to bare load & perform movements of high motor control.

Let’s take the back squat. If we lack core stability and stiffness, our body will be unable to bare the load & it’ll shut down. Once the brain senses a loss of stability, it shuts down the neural drive to complete the movement. & the heavier the weight is, the more potent the fuse box.

Two of my favorite exercises for increasing core stiffness & stability are bird dogs & single arm farmers carry — or really any carries in general. I love the bird dog because it has excellent carry over to the movements we perform in the gym — where are core needs to remain stable while our hips and arms are moving. I love single arm carries because they challenge anti-rotation and lateral flexion & put the least amount of stress on the nervous system as opposed to bilateral carries. They are great to fix any side to side imbalance while also promoting stability through the spine.

Here’s how to perform the single arm farmer’s carry:

 

Here’s how to perform the bird dog w/ a hold variation: