The Best Exercise For Developing Core Strength

The Best Exercise For Developing Core Strength
With the recent fascination in the fitness world to focus on developing functional fitness levels, you may find it comes as a surprise to discover that the best core exercise is not based on a yoga mat. In fact, if you want to develop a leaner, stronger base from which to boost all your big lifts you'll have to go back to the annals of bodybuilding years gone by.

Many people are fooled into believing that the greatest moves for strengthening your core muscles involve working out in a park and doing push ups while hanging from a tree, such is the industry's obsession with new fads and passing gimmicks.

In fact, the best exercise for achieving a well balanced midsection was recently discovered to be the Front Squat. That's right - the variation of the squat everybody overlooks!

While the squat is undoubtedly one of the biggest exercises in the gym, not very many people are aware of it's cousin - the front squat. This is a move adopted by most bodybuilders as it places much more emphasis on the front deltoids and quadriceps than it's bigger, heavier counterpart. The strange stress placed on keeping the body in an upright position while holding the bar in front of the shoulders and neck requires an awful lot of strength.

Researchers from the UK recently looked at the core strength gains possible from front squats and they compared it to a favorite body weight move, the swiss ball superman. The findings were so surprising that the study itself went on to be featured in a July 2011 edition of the Journal Of Strength And Conditioning.

In a shocking twist of events, front squats were found to yield a 5% increase in core strength over the superman.

Despite the fact that they had already shown a 5% strength increase, it was also noted that front squats in the study were actually performed using no weights at all. Just an empty barbell was used. By adding further resistance you would engage the erector spinae even further, making them far more effective than the superman overall.

While most trainers make the mistake of prescribing hundreds of crunches to build a great midsection, overlooked exercises like the front squat can yield tremendous results.

Some of the fads which come and go in the fitness world cause confusion. There is a very common misconception that building core stability simply involves hitting your abs on an exercise ball instead of doing crunches on the floor. This is not the case. Ignoring these foolish trends and taking proven principles from old school methods like bodybuilding, explosive strength training and HIIT is the optimal way to build a well-rounded physique.

Overall, the best core exercise is going to change upon personal preference, of course. However, if you like to base your training on the latest scientific studies then front squats should become an integral part of your leg training program.

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