Looking to make one simple change in your fitness habit? Learn more about your core.

In 2000, a US federal court ruled that Pilates (like yoga or karate) is “an exercise method and not a trademark”.

At that moment, this decades-old technique emerged from underground as already-trained instructors unveiled books, training courses and DVDs.

As the method spread to gyms and shout-y coverlines of magazines, we culturally suddenly and ferverently turned our minds to our “core”.

When a new client starts and tells me they want to focus on their “core”, I ask them to define what they are talking about. Because, (I’m giving away a big secret here) most commonly, it has become a replacement for the word “abs.” (After all, who wants to merely work their “abs” when they can work their “core”?) But the two are indeed different — one is not better or worse, they are just different.

In my practice with clients, I attempt to offer the education and kinesthetic awareness of the muscles of the trunk and the ability to interperet what you are feeling.

If you want to self-educate, start in the same place I often do in the studio with a client: with an anatomy textbook. Look up the following musles:

* rectus abdominus

* internal obliques

* external obliques

* transverse abdominus

If you want to know more, please e-mail me at janis.isaman.ca

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