What does strengthening our Core really mean?
We’ve all heard the idea that we need to strengthen our core. There is a lot of discussion on what this really means, here is what I mean when I say core.
The core, in one way, is our physical core of our body. It is more than just the muscles around our navel, the core is everything from the base of our pelvis to the top of our shoulders/neck. From the core, our head, arms & legs are supported, so there are muscles from our feet to our head that are used as part of core support, so in essence, the core is that connection to the deep supporting muscles throughout our body. So really, it is about supporting our body from the inside instead of the outside. Using the inner core in our practice & as we move through life, we become more stable. As the core becomes stronger & the outer body more relaxed, there a found sense of ease as we move. There are many different ideas of what this physical core is, but this in a nutshell, is mine.
See https://www.ekhartyoga.com/blog/core-strength-in-your-yoga-practice for a more detailed explanation of this.
But I also see the Core, with a capital C, as that inner place that I often call Spirit, True Nature, Pure Energy or Light. It is that place that is not solid but I believe, to be our True Self. The physical body is what we experience in this lifetime, along with it’s thoughts & emotions, but the Inner Core, is that place that is infinite & who we really are. When we say “this is my Core belief” it is coming from this place, where we have wisdom & knowing, that does not come from the intellect.
We are working as much on this inner Core as the core in our physical body as we practice yoga. The inner Core, when we listen to it, tells us when we are being to forceful, or are able to do a bit more because we feel safe. It is where answers come from to our difficult questions. But how do we know these words are coming from this inner place & not just our brain? Practice. Over time, you will be able to connect to your intuition, which is the voice from our Core. I believe, intuition, like any muscle needs to be used to become stronger & more reliable.
See the article below on 5 Ways to Grow Your Intuitive Muscle.
So strengthening our Core is both physical & spiritual. When we become stronger, in both ways, we become more resilient to what life throws our way.
Anne Cox E-RYT 500