Simple Exercises to Strengthen your Core (and avoid Back Pain)

Do the ones you can, 3 times a week.  Keep track and keep progressing!

Warm up Low back with Pelvic Tilts

pelvic tilt

Lie on your back with your knees bent.  Press your low back into the floor and tilt your pelvis forward.  Squeeze everything in your pelvis area for a count of 5 and then release, arching your low back off the mat. Repeat this  8 to 12 times.

Knee to Chest

knee to chest crop

Pull your knees into your chest to give your low back a stretch.   Hold for 15-30 seconds


bridge crop

Lie on your back on table or mat with hips and knees bent with feet flat on floor and arms palm-down at sides; draw in your abdominal muscles and maintain throughout exercise; slowly raise your butt off the floor by using your glutes and hamstrings until your torso is in line with thighs; hold for 3-5 seconds. Repeat 10 – 20 times.

Curl Up


Lying on your back with your knees bent, place your fingers gently behind you head and lift your chin to the ceiling. Tighten your abdominal muscles and use these muscles to slowly elevate your shoulders off of the floor – this will cause your stomach to crunch together and you core muscles to contract. DO NOT pull on your head or Neck.  Slowly lower back to starting position. Repeat a series of 10, three times, adding more as your core gets stronger.

Dead Bug

dead bug 2crop

Lie down and bend your knees so your feet are flat on the floor. Tighten your abs and raise your bent legs so your knees are over your hips, bringing both arms up halfway overhead. Move one arm up while straightening out the opposite leg and not letting it touch the floor. Keep your abs tight as you come back to the starting position.   Then repeat on the other side.  Start with 10 on each side and add more as your core get stronger.

Bird Dog or Kneeling Extension

bird dog crop

Start this move by kneeling on all fours with your hands beneath your shoulders and your knees directly below your hips. Tighten your core muscles and slowly lift your right arm and extend it straight forward. Slowly lift your left leg and extend it straight back, with your toes pointed down. Hold for 10 seconds and slowly lower to starting position. Repeat three times on each side. If this movement is too advanced, try the easy modifications of this movement, lifting just an arm (lower left photo) or just a leg (lower right photo). Hold for 10 seconds and slowly return to starting position. Repeat three times on each side.

Or if you can’t come onto your knees do this exercise

Superman’s Or Superwomen’s


Lie on your stomach with arms and legs extended; retract shoulder blades down and in towards the midline of your spine and draw in abdominal muscles; maintaining this position, lift opposite arm and opposite leg ensuring that your hips stay in contact with the floor; hold for 3-5 seconds and reverse sides. Repeat 10-20 times

Plank – Level 1

knee plank crop

Plank – Level 2

plank crop

Level 1 – Get onto your hands and knees.  Lower down onto your forearms and make sure your elbows are directly under the shoulders.   Walk your knees away from your elbows and lower your butt so you there is a straight line from you head to your knees.

Level 2 . Lie on your stomach and put your directly under the shoulders.  Come up onto your toes and squeeze your butt sure you have a straight line from you ears to your heals.

Hold for 10 seconds and slowly lower to starting position. As you become stronger, hold the position for longer periods of time

Press Up – Stretch

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Lie on your stomach with your arms in front of you.  Push and stretch up through your tummy.   If you

Cat/Cow Stretch

cat crop cow crop

Start this move by kneeling on all fours with your hands beneath your shoulders and your knees directly below your hips. Exhale and gently arch your spine. Inhale, tighten your core muscles and round your back, like a cat. Move slowly between movements and hold in each position for 5-10 seconds. Repeat 10 times.


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If you’re a women over 50 and you’d like to get moving and feel better you should try one of my online workouts designed just for us; low impact cardio to protect our joints, strength training because its a must as we age, Pilates because a strong core = a strong body and more.

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