Health

Three Simple Exercises Recommended by Harvard to Have a Strong Core 50 Years Later


perhaps Physical exercise at a certain age Not one of the most pressing priorities. Bad experiences in the past, lack of motivation, physical discomfort or difficulty finding time or a pattern of exercise that is attractive and sustainable over the long term are some of the reasons why people over 50 are unable to make informed decisions.

There may also be people who are overweight Fear of falling or getting hurt This also acts as a barrier to adhering to a physical activity program. But the reality is that exercise has a range of associated benefits that we can’t ignore.

basically, Physical activity prevents premature death from any cause, the occurrence of certain diseases, obesity, osteoporosis, loss of muscle mass, functional dependence, falls and even cognitive impairment, anxiety and depression. There are reasons enough for the most reluctant to give in.

That’s not to say you have to put in a ton of time to notice noticeable improvements, as that may be enough At least 30 minutes a day, but not all, moderate aerobic exercise. Of course, don’t forget that muscle-strengthening activities that target all major muscle groups of the body are also recommended for two or more days per week, especially at certain ages.

This is Core-focused strength training, including the muscles of the abdomen, back, hips, pelvis, and gluteal muscles. These muscles are key to supporting the lower back and helping to stand, rise from a chair, bend, lift and maintain balance. This is why their maintenance is important as they are essential for better performance of daily tasks.

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“The core muscles provide stability to the moving parts above and below them,” explains Marty Boehm, a physical therapist at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Focusing on this area of ​​the body can improve postural hygiene , flexibility, coordination and balance, helping to protect internal organs and prevent significantly disabling pain such as neck and back pain.

For experts, the best way to strengthen your core is to work multiple muscle groups at once, but he advocates Avoid abdominal exercises and squats Because they pose certain risks to older adults. “They’re dangerous because they pull on the neck,” Boehm said. “And they don’t train the torso. They train the hip flexors. If these muscles become too strong, they can pull on the lower back and cause back pain,” the expert adds.

Best exercises for core muscles

But Boehm recommends three simple exercises that work perfectly for your core-strengthening goal, are not demanding, and can be tweaked in time to make them easier and more accessible.

glute bridge

“Anyone can do the glute bridge. You start in a supine position and then lift and hold your hips off the ground. It’s effective because it creates rigidity from the ribcage to the pelvis and from the navel to the back. The entire area becomes strong and creates a contraction of all muscle groupslike a corset,” Boehm explains.

Lift opposite arms and legs

“The starting position involves leaning on your hands and knees. By extending the other arm and leg, you contract the muscles of your torso and other arm and leg as they support you. The movement must be slow and controlled“Don’t extend your arms and legs as fast as you can,” Boehm concluded.

board

“Planks contract your core, arm and shoulder muscles as you hold the push-up position. The key is to hold as strict as possiblelike a plank of wood,” experts said.

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How to start training your core

Ideal if you’re not quite used to this type of physical work Start little by little Because the important thing is to do every exercise well. As you master this technique, you can gradually increase the number of sets and repetitions, or the time you hold the plank for.

test Do one or two sets of each exercise Rest 10 seconds between exercises and 1 minute between sets. For the first two exercises, you can complete 10 reps, and for the plank, try holding the position for 20 or 30 seconds. If this is too complicated for you, you can try to brace your knees, but ideally don’t do this.

is also essential hot Recommended before and after starting a routine tension Muscles, especially the hip flexors at the front of the pelvis and the hamstrings at the back of the thigh. “We want the core muscles to be short and tight. But we want the muscles around them to be flexible,” the expert concludes.

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As we mentioned before, do moderate aerobic exercise such as walking at a good pace, supplemented by several days of strength trainingUsing the exercises described and others that focus on the muscle groups that make up your core will not only make you feel stronger and more energetic, but it can also help you control your weight and even lose weight. You see they are all good.

However, if you have the slightest doubt about which physical activity or exercise is best for your situation, you can Consult your doctor. He may modify some of the guidelines or add another, but it’s clear that he will agree with our suggestion that you give up your sedentary lifestyle. It has no associated benefits.

Alvaro Piccolo's profile picture

Álvaro Piqueras is a sports expert who has specialized in fitness, nutrition and other health topics for the past five years. Try to stay up to date on the latest research and trends in your field so that you can rigorously share training routines that can inspire you to change your habits, properties of foods that should be part of your diet, or scientific discoveries that can improve the physical and mental health of people like you.

He began his career in local and regional media in the land of Quixote, specifically in Albacete. From there, he spent a fulfilling time at a brilliant independent advertising agency named after the Beatles song “Getting Better” before catapulting him into the national media, although he always maintained his journalism career.

Therefore, he pursued his dream to work for one of the country’s major publishing groups, such as Prisa, Vocento and now Hearst. Perhaps you have read his articles in the digital edition of Diario As, where he discusses countless topics, or in the ABC and other newspapers and magazines of the group, where he prepares branded content for big brands, multinationals and institutions Report. If you haven’t had the chance, now is the time to give it a try in Men’s Health and Runner’s World.

It couldn’t be otherwise, he admits that he is a sports enthusiast and from an early age he tried various sports such as track and field, football, basketball, tennis, cycling or swimming. Sometimes feel the adrenaline rush of competition and sometimes just enjoy the benefits of physical activity. Now he’s doing functional exercises and boxing because he’s convinced the punching bag can’t fight him back.

He graduated in Advertising and Public Relations from the University of Alicante and has also received specialized training in social media management and guidance, strategic planning and graphic design. Recently, he delved into the field of generative artificial intelligence applied to journalism, but he said under oath and perjury that he was not using it for professional purposes because, among other factors, after 20 years of experience in the field of communications, he Still love every word I wrote. .

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