Build a Resilient Spine: Lock Down Core Stability

Matthew Ibrahim


Medford, Massachusetts, United States

Strength Training, Mobility & Recovery


Everything starts at the core. Your abs, obliques, and lower back muscles have to be working during all forms of movement in order to transfer energy and create forces.


This means your midsection needs to be functioning properly with sound technique and mechanics during exercise. Sure, you want to lift heavy weights and train hard, but possessing the ability to move well with good form should be your first priority.



Establishing spinal stiffness and core stability is the first step you need to take before getting to this point. Once you’ve mastered those areas, your next mission will be to add movement to your stable foundation, otherwise known as your core.


Strenthen your core to protect your back.

Energy is transferred through your core when lifting heavy. Ensure that your midsection is rock solid with these core-stabalizing exercises.


Sensory Input for Optimal Movement Output

These exercises will challenge the core by moving one arm or leg. This provides an increased stimulus for the spine and surrounding musculature to help stabilize. It’s kind of like that annoying kid who sits next to you in class and just wouldn’t shut up while you were trying to pay attention. Annoying? Yes. Effective? Highly.


When you challenge the core by moving one arm or one leg, you’re asking your muscles to fire at a higher rate to keep you in a stable position. This won’t be easy, but it will have a direct carryover into your bigger lifts and exercises when the stabilization demand is needed.


You’ll also use tools such as manual perturbations and resistance bands to get the job done. No need for fancy or gimmicky training tools here – keep it simple. What you’re looking for is sensory input to provide proper movement output.



That’s why using neuromuscular feedback and reactive neuromuscular training techniques are so important. Not only can they be used as corrective ways to groove a good pattern, but they can also be used to provide that sensory feedback the body needs to correct itself.


It Starts With Breathing

No, I’m not going to advise you to spend sixty minutes on breathing. Not only is that a time dump, it’s not what we came here to do, which is train and move weight.


Most people miss the boat big time with respect to proper breathing patterns. My approach is super simple, per usual. Take the things you’re already doing in your training, and simply add basic breathing patterns to those.


As a bonus, proper breathing during training allows you to feel more tension and stability in your mid-section with 360 degrees of expansion. This will make the weight and resistance will seem much easier to move. You can thank me later.



These four exercises will help you build stability during movement:


  1. RKC plank with alternating 1-arm reach
  2. Side plank with breathing
  3. Bird-dog reactive neuromuscular training with band
  4. In-line half-kneeling chop


Continue for Video Demonstration of the RKC Plank With Alternating 1-Arm Reach


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