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5 core exercises

5 core exercises

Here are some exercises to get you started: 

1. Plank: Place your forearms on the floor, with your elbows directly under your shoulders and hands facing forward so that your arms are parallel. Extend your legs out behind you and rest your toes on the floor. Your body should form one straight line from your shoulders to your heels. Squeeze your core, glutes, and quads, and tuck your butt under a little to keep your lower back straight. Make sure you are not dropping your hips or hiking your butt up high toward the ceiling. Position your head so that your neck is in a neutral position, and your gaze is on your hands. Hold this position.

2. Panther Shoulder Tap: Start on all fours. Engage your core and while keeping your back flat and your butt down (like you're in a plank), lift your knees off the floor about 1-3 inches. Gaze at the floor a few inches in front of your hands to keep your neck in a comfortable position. Tap your right hand to your left shoulder, and then your left hand to your right shoulder, while using your core strength to keep your hips as still as you can. Continue alternating sides.

3. Butterfly Sit-Up: Lie faceup with the soles of your feet together, knees bent out to sides. Extend your arms overhead. This is your starting position. Using your core, roll your body up until you are sitting upright. Reach forward to touch your toes. That's 1 rep. Slowly lower back down to the starting position and continue immediately into the next rep.

4. Dead Bug: Lie face up with your arms extended toward the ceiling and your legs in a tabletop position (knees bent 90 degrees and stacked over your hips with feet in the air). This is your starting position. Slowly extend your right leg out straight, while simultaneously dropping your left arm overhead. Keep both a few inches from the ground. Squeeze your butt and keep your core engaged the entire time, lower back pressed into the floor. Bring your arm and leg back to the starting position. Repeat on the other side, extending your left leg and your right arm.

5. High Boat to Low Boat: Sit up straight with your legs bent, feet flat on the floor. Keeping your legs together, slowly lift your feet off the floor until your legs form a 45-degree angle to your torso. Engage your entire core, keep your back flat, and balance on your tailbone. Straighten your legs for more of a challenge. Hold for three deep breaths, then lower your legs, straightening them out to hover a few inches off the floor. Hold for one breath, then lift back up.

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