CBD Wellness Centre, level 1, 110 William st, Perth
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Patient Education

Core stability

Sitting down for long periods, as many desk workers do, can bring about many problems such as

  • Reduced extension of the lower back
  • Stiffness of the mid and upper back
  • Tight weak muscles of the shoulders and shoulder blades
  • Hunched shoulders
  • Tightness of the external hip muscles.

From the 1st episode of back pain the deep stabilisers change how the function, and the spine and pelvis are no longer protected by the deep stabilisers as well as they should . Once injured the deep stabilisers

  • Have delayed action and are only turned on after you move
  • Turn on and off as you move, working as the global muscles move rather than remaining on at low intensity
  • They work in short burst rather than staying on as you move.

Core stability refers to the body’s ability to control the trunk or core. It involves the control of deep stabilising muscles and the more superficial global muscles. Core stability is about being able to use the right muscles at the right time and intensity in order to control the trunk appropriately for the task at hand. The deep stabilising muscles form a muscular cylinder supporting the spine and pelvis. These muscles include the transverse abdominal, multifidus, pelvic floor and diaphram and work together to hold your trunk stable.

Global muscles work together to move your body ie limbs and trunk

The deep stabilisers

  • Attach directly to the spine at each level
  • Turn on before you move to support the spine and pelvis
  • Turn on and stay on as you move
  • Work at a low intensity and stay on for a long time
  • Work independently from the global muscles

When the deep stabilisers do not function as they should to stabilise the spine, the brain recruits the global muscles to compensate. Pain around the back, pelvis or groin is because of these compensatory mechanisms. Treating painful areas only offers short term relief unless the cause of the instability is tackled, ie strengthening the deep stabilisers or core stability.

In order to improve core stability it is important to affect both the local deep stabilisers and the global muscles, for instance by improving the health and strength of the deep stabilisers, the compensatory mechanism of the global muscles are reduced. The reduction in the compensatory strategies will make you feel better

By strengthening your core stability you
  • Improve deep abdominal and pelvic floor tone
  • Improve posture
  • Decrease back pain, neck pain and pelvic pain
  • Decreases risk of acute injury
  • Improves flexibility
  • Improves sport performance
Core stability training is for the treatment and prevention of reoccurance of many areas including
  • Low back
  • Groin
  • Pelvis
  • Hamstring
  • Hip
  • Knee
  • Shoulder
  • Women’s health pregnancy and pelvic floor

Training the Core

The common myth is that training the core simply involves sit ups and back extensions. An efficient core routine consists of multiplanar movements - training in all planes of motion. As the body moves, the centre of gravity changes, and forces exerted by, and on, the body’s tissues are constantly changing. Dynamic stabilization must be included to increase proprioception and stability in the trunk, as well as in the rest of the body. This allows the parts of the body to react efficiently to external forces and stresses, such as gravity, changes in terrain, and carrying loads, as well as the internal forces exerted by other muscles. Dynamic stability is best achieved through training in functionally practical positions that mimic activities or movements in one’s particular sport, or in life as a whole. With this in mind, one can conclude that most core training that is done while sitting or lying down and limiting pelvic movement has little functional value.

Medicine balls, balance boards and stability balls are great tools for core training and should be integrated into every program.
Core exercises should include strengthening, as well as challenges such as standing one-legged and/or two-legged on stable and unstable surfaces, reacting to external forces such as a partner’s light push or the catching and throwing of a medicine ball, and moving the joints of the body through all planes of motion. The goal of functional core training is to develop in the core a system of efficient automatic responses to work as a stable base from which to generate optimal force and motion.

Menu 1: Floor Static

Aimed at developing the basic level of lumbar and pelvic stability, working the front, rear, and side muscles of the pelvic floor.

  • The plank
  • The gluteal bridge
  • Bird dog or superman
  • Side plank

 

Menu 3: Swiss ball static

Aimed at challenging your ability to hold good posture and pelvic alignment against both both body weight and the instability of the swiss ball

  • Swiss ball sit and lift leg off
  • Supine swiss ball bridge
  • Swiss ball gluteal bridge
  • Swiss ball plank

Menu 2: Floor Dynamic

Aimed at developing a good level of strength endurance in the major trunk muscles.

  • Active straight leg raise
  • Oblique crunch
  • Side lying hip abduction
  • Lying wind screen wipers

 

Menu 4: Swiss ball dynamic

Aimed at the front back and side of the trunk

  • Swiss ball back extensions
  • Swiss ball overhead pull
  • Swiss ball squat thrusts
  • Swiss Ball side crunch

Core Stability is the key to preventing re injury.

If you require any information regarding core stability then please contact your chiropractor at Central City Chiropractic on 08 94868653 and we will be happy to give you advice and an information sheet.