Beginner Level Core Strengthening Exercises: Q+A

Dr. Dean Goodman, a practicing chiropractor (website here), asked me:

“I would like to share your core strength video with my patients….many of whom would be quite challenged simply by 15 seconds in plank. Do you have any standing core exercises to recommend?”

I filmed a quick response for Dr. Goodman this morning.

Beginner Core Strengthening Exercises

note: if you’d like some more beginner and intermediate level core strengthening exercises, check out the links in the More Info section below.

Every exercise and movement is made up of individual components. You can always make an exercise easier or more challenging by making very minor changes. Isometric planks are an obvious example of how easy it is to adjust the difficulty level.

The beginner level FlowFit exercises that I demonstrated are all very basic variations of exercises that become more sophisticated in the FlowFit program. With each of the four levels, the exercise sophisticates and becomes more challenging. (Here is an example of some level 3 and 4 exercises from the FlowFit program, click here for video).

Ultimately, we all want to perform sophisticated movements with strength and finesse. And the good news is that you can, one step at a time as you deepen your daily personal practice. Each exercise is built from an easier, simpler version, and if we practice the basics diligently our movement will naturally adapt with each and every practice session. There will come a point when you can pick up new skills rapidly, and apply them with strength, finesse, and ease.

The FlowFit program is an excellent all-in-one exercise DVD. I’ve used it for a long time and I highly recommend it!

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More Information

The Right Way to do the Plank Exercise

The 5 Minute Plank for Core Strength, Stability, and Rock-Hard Abs

The Elbow Plank VS Pushup Position Plank



7 Responses

  1. HI – Dr. Goodman recommended I check out your video. I liked it and will try the exercises. However, I wanted more so I ordered the Fit Flow DVD. Next time, I would like to see your adorable dog doing some exercises too!

  2. You made a great choice by ordering FlowFit. I was blown away at how simple and practical the program is, yet it produces awesome results.

    And yes, my dog ‘Ronin’ seems to be the true star here on my site. He’s 7 month old and a big ball of fluff! I’ll try to get some more footage of him in future videos.


  3. rachael turnquist

    great exercises!! I am a student physical therapist assistant working in a long term acute care hospital in the PT department. I am wondering if you have any core strengthening ideas for bedbound, wheelchair bound, wheelchair bound geriatric patients?
    I love the dog too.

  4. Thanks Rachel! I’m sorry, but I don’t have any specific exercises for bedbound or wheelchair bound patients. I’ll leave that up to physical therapists like you!

    My philosophy is that if someone is in need of rehabilitation, then they need to focus on recovery before augmenting their life with any type of strength-specific activity. Now, if someone is mechanically disabled, but otherwise physically and mentally healthy, then that person can certainly use the assistance of a fitness professional. It would be too difficult to assess and prescribe a general exercise routine without actually meeting with such a patient though.

    Thanks again for stopping by – I’ll keep these exercise vids coming!

  5. Hi John — Wanted to send you another thank you for making this little clip. I have made it part of my cross-training and credit it with my ability to run a little faster this year than last year. If the weather gods smile on me, I am going to run a PR in the L.A. Marathon in about two weeks. Best wishes always, Dr. G

  6. Thanks for the inspiration about gradually working up to a full plank. What sort of dog breed is Ronin?

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