Choose your Core Exercises as Indy Chose in the Last Crusade: Wisely!
Too often am I in the gym witnessing poor form and exercise execution. One of the biggest areas I see flaws in movement is also one of the most important areas: the core! Most people have seen or tried what is often referred to as a Russian Twist. Should you be doing this to strengthen your core? Answer these questions and proceed as follows:
Can you sit upright with knees slightly bent, feet on the floor? If yes, move on to the next question. If no, practice the posture drill at the wall to work on maintaining a stable trunk.
Can you lean back a bit and lift your feet up in the air (knees still bent) while still maintaining the natural curve in your lumbar spine? If yes, you can try performing a Russian Twist. If no, then you need to work on maintaining the curve in a static hold (a modified Boat Pose – see Yoga).
The takeaway is that I DO NOT want you to be rotating a weighted spine in a flexed/compressed position. This is something to stay away from, and any “gains” from forcing yourself through this faulty movement pattern will likely be lost when you are hurt in the future.