What Is the Intrinsic Core?
Did you know that your core is actually made up of 5 muscles? The core is a hot topic and an area that a lot of people spend a lot of time and energy training but often the true intrinsic core muscles are left out or ignored in favour of the more superficial muscles that look good at the beach!
The intrinsic core is made up of the transverse abdominals, internal oblique, multifidus, diaphragm and pelvic floor. The focus of these muscles is to support the lumbar spine and create intra-abdominal pressure. So basically these muscles are SUPER important for preventing major lower back injuries like blowing a disc. If there is a weakness in any one of these 5 important muscles you may notice posture changes such as an increased or decreased lumbar lordosis which can lead into a slouched forward posture through the shoulders and thoracic spine. Maintaining strength and control in this group of 5 muscles is extremely important for looking after the function and health of your spine.
What Causes Weakness in the Intrinsic Core?
So, what causes weakness to develop in the intrinsic core? Unfortunately, it is very common to find people with weakness in one or several of the intrinsic core muscles. One of the most common causes of weakness I find is due to incorrect training. When people start to focus too much on training the external core muscles like the rectus abdominals and external obliques. The deeper intrinsic layer tends to get down-regulated and allows the larger extrinsic muscles to work instead. The other usual culprits include sitting too much, not training enough or old lower back injuries that haven’t healed correctly and the body is stuck in a compensation state of using extrinsic back muscles instead of the core.
Make Sure Your Intrinsic Core Is Working Correctly
Getting your intrinsic core to work correctly is really important in order to prevent lower back injuries and maintain the health of your spine. If you would like any more information about intrinsic core strength or would like an assessment, feel free to contact my Brisbane Chiropractic clinic or ask me a question today.