Your favorite core exercises - beginner level

Good Morning fitness friends!

I am trying to start working on my core, and strengthening my lower back. I have some back problems, and can't do standard push ups or full planks. I know there are probably some excellent exercises out there to get me started that I haven't heard of!

Right now I am doing beginner's yoga to build a base, but want to start with some other things at home as well.

Any suggestions? pics/videos/links welcome :)


  • AliNouveau
    AliNouveau Posts: 36,287 Member
    Pilates is great for the core and when I had a back issue it was the only thing that would give me relief from the pain. Blogilates is a million videos and is good Pilates. Just search on YouTube blogilates beginner core and you'll find lots of videos. I do suggest going to a Pilates mat class though to make sure you have the basics down
  • hesn92
    hesn92 Posts: 5,967 Member
    I was going to say pilates in general... I have done some blogilates pilates videos on youtube that were targeted towards the abs and they were pretty good, and hard.
  • bourbon_n_barbells
    bourbon_n_barbells Posts: 425 Member
    Make sure you do thoracic spine openers - opening up your upper back/shoulders will also help relieve lower back pain. stretching is just as important as strengthening! Good luck
  • Cherimoose
    Cherimoose Posts: 5,210 Member
    What do you think started your back problems.. and how long ago?
  • firef1y72
    firef1y72 Posts: 1,579 Member
    Umm as your doing yoga,

    Bird dog is great for working the core, start with the most basic version in table top with your leg extended, toe on floor, opposite arm extended. Then try lifting foot off floor and holding. Finally add a crunch bringing the knee of the raised leg to the opposite elbow during the in breath and returning to full extension on the out.

    I'm assuming you can manage down dog, just holding that works the core. Can you manage vinyasas and flow through up dog to down dog? There is the plank in the middle, but you can drop to the knees. Again works the core, and gives a nice stretch for the back too.

    I'm finding extended side angle is really working my obliques at the moment, especially when I bind it. You do need to be careful with alignment though, it can be intense.
  • ritzvin
    ritzvin Posts: 2,860 Member
    Bent over barbell rows made the biggest difference for me on my core starting out when my abs were still weak (too weak to do any of the traditional abs-specific moves either at all or with decent form that wouldn't hurt my neck /back).

  • sammidelvecchio
    sammidelvecchio Posts: 791 Member
    Cherimoose wrote: »
    What do you think started your back problems.. and how long ago?

    I have degenerative disc disease, started at age 16 (i'm 32 now). I also have OA in my back, hips, knees, hands....etc. diagnosed at age 24, and another chronic pain condition that rares it's ugly head a lot by making my back very stiff and sore.

    @firef1y72 thanks! yes, I do a lot of flow through down and up dog. side angle feels good as does pigeon. I'll check out the others you mention!

    @ritzvin thanks! I am starting with resistance bands and can do those with a band instead of a bar, i'll add that to the list!

    @bourbon_n_barbells yes sir 100%. I stretch so much everyday you'd think it was a part time job LOL. I'll check that video out.

    @ ali and hesn ....I'll look that up. I've always been so intimidated by pilates
  • middlehaitch
    middlehaitch Posts: 8,477 Member
    Don’t laugh, belly dancing.

    Honestly as close to an absolute beginner, and hating most exercise, I added belly dancing as an alternate to aqua fit and I have never been as in tune with my abs as I was when doing belly dancing once a week.

    It was also fun standing in front of the bathroom mirror watching as I rolled my abs up and down and side to side.

    Remembering and applying what I learnt in those early classes has really helped me keep my abs strong and engaged over the years.
    I wish the classes were still offered, I could do with a refresher (YouTube doesn’t do it for me-lm lazy)

    Pilates, yoga, etccame after the bellydancing

    Cheers, h.
  • SnifterPug
    SnifterPug Posts: 746 Member
    Paloff press with a resistance band.
  • sammidelvecchio
    sammidelvecchio Posts: 791 Member
    @middlehaitch thank you! I will definitely give it a try. I love to dance!

    @SnifterPug just looked this up on you tube .... very interesting! I've never heard of it. I will try it! Thank you!