Core Stability Physiotherapy At Sydney Physio Clinic
If you are looking for improved performance and reducing risk of injury then core stability physiotherapy exercises and training plays a key role in any sport or functional movement. Depending on your requirements core stability physiotherapy exercises may take on a different focus, exercises can include static or dynamic postures and focus on building strength, power, endurance or focus on the speed, timing and balance of the muscle contractions.
Postural and Dynamic Muscles
One way of simply classifying muscles based on their function could be to break them up into being either postural and dynamic muscles. Where postural muscles are generally your local muscles acting to provide stability to an area, dynamic muscles are more global muscles traveling greater distances across joints acting to generate movement. Without these local postural muscles doing their job you will fail to have a solid platform for the other more dynamic muscles to act from.
Core Stability Physiotherapy Exercises Provides A Stable Base
Your spine is an unstable area by design which could be likened to a stack of cotton reels lined up one on top of each other, your lower back comprises of five of these cotton reels stacked on top of a triangular bone of your pelvis called the sacrum which is wedged in between either side of the pelvis bones. The vertebrae of your lower back need to allow movement but need to provide a solid base for your lower and upper extremities to work from. This is where your core muscles come into play, without a strong core these cotton reels would fall in a heap on the floor. Core stability physiotherapy exercises and having optimum core strength is vital to the dynamic control and support of your spine and therefore crucial to the ability to perform even the most simple of tasks because core muscle activation precedes all activity with co-contraction of your core muscles occurring prior to any movement of your limbs.
What Muscles Do Core Stability Physiotherapy Exercises Focus On?
When most people think core stability they think abdominals, specifically the deep abdominals. Your deep trunk muscles including the transversus abdominis, multifidus, internal oblique, paraspinal muscles and the pelvic floor are all key to the support of your spine. Co-contraction of these muscles produces forces via the thoracolumbar fascia and intra-abdominal pressure mechanisms stabilising and resisting forces acting on the lumbar spine. These abdominal and trunk muscles are not the extent of your core, your core can be considered to involve a number of other muscles including your hip adductors, hip flexors and gluteal muscles all playing an important role in trunk stability. For any core stability physiotherapy program to be effective it must address both the contribution of and any weakness in these muscles groups not just the deep trunk muscles alone.
How Best To Train Your Core Muscles
Training for improving the function of your core muscles must be task specific, taking into account any positions stability is required as well as the type of contraction required. Being stabilisers your core muscles are not there to generate movement but to stabilise during movement and must act as stabilisers throughout the day all day every day, not just during sports or heavy DIY activities… Hence appropriate core muscle endurance is key to successful core stability physiotherapy programs and the training of these core muscles to effectively hold the lumbar spine in neutral positions working to keep the natural ‘S’ curve of the spine when possible.
The Benefits Of Core Stability Physiotherapy Training
Research has shown individuals with chronic low back pain have weaker core muscles and that back pain can cause your deep core stability muscles to ‘switch off’. Weak and unbalanced core muscles are linked to low back pain, where as having strong core muscles reduces stress and creates a stable base to operate from. Athletic performance is improved by increased ability to generate power, the more stable your core the more power you can generate and subsequently transfer to your limbs.
Weak core muscles can result in the loss of the desired lumbar curve during static and dynamic positioning, where as a stronger more balanced core helps maintain the appropriate posture and corrects postural imbalances that can lead to pain and injury.
Good Core Strength Is Not Just About Doing Lots Of Crunches
It is not enough to just do sit ups or crunches if you want a strong core, abdominal muscles are just a small part of your core and muscular control and stability around the lumbar spine and pelvis is maintained by coordinated activation and control of a number of muscles all playing their own part to stabilise the region. Any core stability physiotherapy program must focus on the assessment then training of your core muscles to improve the timing, activation and strength of the necessary muscles to aid in providing a strong core platform for your body.
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