We all had a moment in our training career where we felt great after a training session. But then all of a sudden, the next day we experience some sort of pain. Speaking from experience, I know how frustrating this feels like. We start to analyze, "where could this pain be coming from? I don't remember doing anything too crazy to experience this pain?"
As you are sitting here reading this article, you might be experiencing some pain. The pain could either be coming from your lower back, your hamstrings, whatever the case may be.
What if I were to tell you that this pain you were experiencing could possibly be coming from a lack of core strength/stability.
My what, you may ask?
Your core. When I ask athletes in the initial evaluation, "show me where your core is", do you know where 99% of them point to? The stomach.
Great, you're on the right track. But that's not the whole thing!
Let's go over what the core truly is, and why a lack in core strength and stability during training can result in an experience of pain.
Before I just give the answer away, i want you to stand up out of your chair. Get your feet around hip
width apart, slight bend in both knees, squeeze your butt, arms relaxed to the sides with the shoulder blades coming together, take a deep breath in, and exhale as fully as you can.
Hopefully you experienced engagement from not only your abdominal muscles, but you felt your obliques and spinal muscles turn on at the same time.
There you have it! This is your core.
By textbook definition, the core musculature surrounds the spine. It's job is to stabilize the spine during movement. In other words, it's trying to prevent unwanted movement.
As movement practitioners, we look at the spine as the engine of movement. Proximal (centered) stability creates distal (outward) mobility.
With poor core engagement, control, or stability, the athlete is unable to create efficient movement. When we put a load with inefficient movement, this is where injury occurs, or where pain starts to surface.