Somehow, the term ‘core training’ has become an umbrella term for a one-size-fits-all prescription of exercises, with little real thought or consideration for what we’re actually training the core for. Read a core training for runners programme and you’ll see the same re-hashed series of exercises, most of which don’t bear the slightest resemblance to runners and the demands placed on the core by running.
A bodybuilder wouldn’t train his legs the same way a runner would, so why do we assume that when it comes to core training for runners, we should repeat the same few exercises that other sportsmen and women use?
The difference between ‘exercise’ and ‘training’ is simple. Exercise is activity for enjoyment and health promotion. Training is performing activity with the purpose of becoming better at a particular skill, event, or activity. That’s why not all running programmes are the same – you train for a Tough Mudder differently to how you’d train for a marathon, for example.
Core training for runners means building a particular core strength that is ideal for running. One that allows you to maintain form, prevent injury and improve performance during a run. We can break down the running stride, look at the demands of the sport and then build a programme that helps the runner improve their training and in turn, improve their running.
This article on core training for runners will hopefully change the way you think about your core training.