A Simple Core Exercise for a Strong Back
One of the best things to do for your spine is to have a good strong core. Your core is all those muscles in your trunk or mid torso that stabilize your spine and keep you upright and standing strong on your two feet. A strong core helps to hold your adjustments longer and prevents injury.
As important as having a strong core is, people hate most of the exercises they have to do to develop those muscles. When I suggest the plank exercise to patients I often get a look of distress like they just ate something rather unpleasant! Most tell me they will do them and then guess what? They don’t!
Hate the Plank Exercise? This is for your
So in an effort to provide a different exercise that works your core, that is NOT a plank exercise, that does NOT require you to get on the floor, that CAN be done by literally EVERYONE, I present you….The Single-Arm Farmer’s Walk.
Single-Arm Farmer’s Walk
The only thing you need is some sort of object with enough weight to it that it causes you to lean slightly to the side when holding it. This typically is done with a kettlebell or a hand weight, but can be done with a gallon milk jug, or even better a grocery bag (or reusable carry bag, purse etc.) you fill with heavy objects.
To start, don’t go too crazy with something super heavy, you can build up the weight over time.
Once you establish a weight that pulls you to lean to the side, you will want to contract your muscles on the opposite side of the weighted arm to stand up straight. So really you are using your muscles to not allow yourself to tip i.e. just standing straight not allowing the weight to lean you over.
All you have to do is start walking
Once you are standing tall and straight and feel stable you will want to begin walking.
You want to take 20 steps forward. Then turn around, switch the weight to the opposite side hand and walk back those same 20 steps. You should repeat this for 3 to 6 minutes of timed exercise. As a variation, you could take 10 steps forward and then 10 steps backward holding the weight on the same side, but do this only after you feel comfortable and stable performing the original exercise. Now with any exercise you begin, it is better to start lighter, and go for a shorter time, and work your way up as your body gets stronger, than to start out with a heavier weight and trying to do way more minutes. Often less is more!
So that’s it.
A simple new way to engage your core with having to do planks! Thanks for letting me be your chiropractor!
In Good Health,