Doing exercises to stabilize your muscles, joints, and ligaments helps to decrease and prevent pain and avoid injury. So if, for example, you’re going to be running on uneven pavement, it would be beneficial for you to have worked on your body’s ability to stabilize your ankles.
Stabilizing exercises will help you maintain correct posture and form, which makes it easier to perform routine tasks throughout the day and improves your workout performance, efficiency, and effectiveness.
In my work as a weight loss coach for women, I advise my private weight loss coaching clients on specifically which exercises to do that will not only help them tone up and slim down but also keep their body healthy and prevent injuries. Experiencing pain or becoming injured are common reasons people give for not reaching fitness goals, which is unfortunate because many problems are preventable with proper guidance.
If you’re someone who works out often, you may not realize how important it is to work on your stabilizing muscles. But you should know that working out in the gym for toning is not going to necessarily help with stabilizing. So you can look tone and fit, but if your stabilizing muscles are weak because you’ve overworked your other muscles, you’re setting yourself up for possible injury.
Keys to improved muscle stabilization include:
- Slow and steady controlled movement
- Exercises that focus on maintaining your balance
- Low weight or just body weight and relatively high number of reps
I teamed up with my favorite workout partner, media personality Jenny Milkowski, to demonstrate an exercise that strengthens stabilizer muscles.
How to do this muscle-stabilizing exercise step-by-step:
- Stand with your legs slightly apart and place your hands on your hips.
- Bring one knee up while balancing on your standing leg.
- SLOWLY reach the raised leg back. Focus on keeping your abs in while maintaining your balance. (Bonus tip from Jenny: Imagine a thread at the top of your head pulling up. This will help with your balance.)
- Press down through the heel of your standing leg. Hold.
- SLOWLY lower your leg and return to your starting position, with your knee raised in front of you and balance on your standing leg.
- Repeat 5 times.
- Switch sides and repeat the exercise by lifting the opposite knee and balancing on the opposite leg.
- Repeat 5 times on the second side.
And there you have it. Remember, you have to take care of your body, it’s the only one you’ve got! I want you to push yourself and step it up but also make sure you are always taking the necessary steps to prevent injury and feel good in your body.
Join me for a FREE (and FUN!) 21-day crash course on how to finally break through the mental roadblocks getting in the way of your goals, gain the confidence you’ve always wanted, and discover the secret to designing a healthy lifestyle you love. Sign up for the FREE 21-Day Challenge for a simple but powerful workout plan, an easy-to-follow eating guide, and fun confidence-boosting exercises.