| By Frank Dolan

What is the first exercise you think of when you think of “Core” Training?

Is it sit-ups or crunches?

Although sit-ups and crunches facilitate general strengthening of the abdominal muscles they are not a great choice when it comes to functionally training the core. Recent research also shows that excessive torso flexion can also lead to lower back pain.

In order to train the core correctly you first need to think about what the core actually does:

- Keeps you upright

- Provides posture

- Protects your spine

- Resists extension

- Resists rotation

- Transfers energy from lower body to upper body

In many ways the core functions while remaining completely still. A good strong core provides a point of stability to move your arms and legs around. This way you can produce force into the ground when you walk, run, and jump. And, it also allows you to transfer energy from the ground to your upper extremities when you hit, throw, punch, or pull.

Frank Dolan

<p>Frank Dolan is a Strength and Conditioning Specialist and the owner of Sports and Fitness Performance in Islip, NY. In addition to studying directly under such industry luminaries as: Gray Cook, Mark Verstegen, and Mike Boyle, Frank consults for organizations such as Equinox Fitness Clubs, Major League Strength, The Baseball Factory, and several local colleges, high schools and sports organizations. He is an expansion team presenter for Functional Movement Systems (FMS) and in 2008 he worked as consultant to the NY Yankees during Spring Training. He may be reached by e-mail at <a href="mailto:coachfrankdolan@gmail.com">coachfrankdolan@gmail.com</a> or at the facility by phone (631) 650-7140.</p>