When a ballerina spins on one foot to perform a pirouette, it isn’t just her leg doing the work.
“A strong core keeps her posture perfect,” says Kristen Kurie, a physical therapist with the New York City Ballet. “If the dancer had a weak core, they’d wobble like a top.”
The body’s core muscles include the back muscles and abdominals. Many core exercises focus on the so-called six-pack abs and the obliques, which run along the sides of the body, she says.
“We tend to neglect the transversus abdominis, which is the deepest layer of abdominals responsible for stabilizing the trunk,” Ms. Kurie says. “When you see a dancer’s arms moving one direction and legs leaping the other direction, yet their spine is long and tall, it’s the transversus abdominis keeping the body balanced.”
These exercises target all core muscles and will help improve your posture and balance. Having a strong core also helps prevent lower-back pain.