Core Strengthening

In this lesson, we examine core strengthening poses as a category, and ways to apply this knowledge in teaching.


Become proficient in the function and benefits of core strengthening poses, effective cueing for core engagement, and ways to promote a balanced approach to core health.


Describe how true core strengthening differs from the way in which popular culture promotes strong abdominals. Explain benefits associated with healthy core strengthening and issues related to weak abdominals. Describe potential problems with the phrase, “engage your core” and other ways to cue core engagement. Provide examples of poses that use the abdominals as stabilizers and explain the type of movement needed to bring balance after core strengthening work. Give specific reasons why sit-ups and crunches are not the optimal core strengthening exercise for many people.

Questions Answered Here

  1. What makes up the core?
  2. What are the superficial / outermost abdominal muscles?
  3. What does the rectus abdominis do? What is an example of an asanathat works it?
  4. What do the obliques do? What is an example of an asanathat work them?
  5. What does the TA do? What is an example of an asanathat works it?
  6. Where are the erector spinae muscles? What do they do?
  7. What are multifidus muscles? What do they do?
  8. Describe four functions of the core.
  9. What simple exercise can give students the experience of feeling the abdominal muscles in their role as stabilizers?