Today we tell you about the importance of strengthening your central or core area for performance and injury prevention in triathlon.
core It is an English term that means center or nucleus, and as its name indicates, it is the nerve center of our musculoskeletal system, in charge of generating and transferring forces and stabilizing the body during our movements.
It can be defined as a muscular box formed by the abdominals in the front, paravertebral y buttocks in the back, the diaphragm at the top and the pelvic floor and the pelvic musculature on the bottom. If we go into the detail of which muscles are contained in "the muscular box", we would find 29 pairs of muscles They help stabilize the spine, pelvis, and driveline during movement.
In the following images you can see the main muscles to which we refer:
Source: Google images
How will strengthening these muscles help me?
You can find many answers, but we summarize the main functions that the muscles of the core:
- Improvement of stability and balance, both the trunk and the pelvis
- Improves effort economy, less energy expenditure in the same movement
- Decrease the probability of injuryStrong muscles protect our joints
- Decrease the probability of problems pelvic floor (mainly in women)
- Decrease the probability of sciatica y lumbar problems (protrusions, hernias, etc.)
And if we have not yet convinced you of the great importance of the work of the musculature of the core, let's see how it affects our sport:
- Swimming: maintenance of the horizontal position without excessive lumbar lordosis, higher hips and legs in the water (decreases resistance to advance), stability in the rolling movement, protection in hyperextension of the spine (visualize buoy).
- Biking: protection of the lumbar and dorsal spine in the position on the bike, high demand on steep climbs (mainly in the lumbar area), shock absorption from uneven terrain (MTB), hip stability during pedaling (mainly in the riding position) foot).
- Carrera: protection from constant impact on the lower back, stabilization of the spine, upright position that provides greater amplitude and momentum in the stride.
If in any sport the importance of keeping the core strong is very relevant, in triathlon it rises to the cube, given that in addition to the main functions of each of the disciplines, we perform rapid and explosive movements of position changes that demand the central musculature.
So from now on, don't focus gym work only on the limb musculature and give importance to the work of your nerve center of movement, it will help you in all your sports gestures!
Akuthota V, Ferreiro A, Moore T, Fredericson M. Core stability exercise principles. Curr Sports Med Rep. 2008; 7 (1): 39-44.
Laura García Cervantes
Dra. Sciences of Physical Activity and Sport
Technical Director of the Trikatlón Tres Cantos Club
Senior Triathlon and Swimming Trainer
Paratriathlon Specialist Coach