Good Moves

Engage Your Core and Cultivate Strength With This Heat-Building Yoga Flow

There's a lot of talk about engaging your core, but did you know that it's not a singular muscle? When experts, yoga teachers, and fitness instructors talk about strengthening your core, they're actually referring to a group of muscles instead of one body part. These muscles support your spine and help your musculoskeletal system function well.

Sometimes, though, core workouts can be a bit stressful? I have shied away from workouts that seem like 45 minutes of crunches and burpees. The thing is, you don't need to do something that intense to strengthen your core. For instance, a yoga flow for strength and core engagement can involve slow, intentional breathing, relaxed stretching, total body movement, and some much-needed laying-on-the-floor-time. If that sounds like a good time to you, then you're in luck. In this most recent episode of Good Moves, BK Yoga Club founders Paris Alexandra and Alicia Ferguson take you through a slow yoga flow for strength that engages your abdomen and leaves you feeling accomplished.

This practice starts slow, allowing you to breathe, center yourself, and connect with your body. Alexandra leads you through total body stretches that warm up your arms, core, and legs. Then she turns up the heat with some leg lifts, plank modifications, and more advanced adaptations of poses like downward dog and warrior pose. 

Amidst some core-engaging leg lifts and poses that involve holding lunges, Alexandra suggests you check in with your body and mind. "Invite strength into your practice," she says. "Wherever you are is where you're meant to be." She incorporates calming, restful postures like tabletop, cat, and cow poses between the more challenging postures. The balance is an excellent reminder that you can build strength with slow, careful determination. Ready to engage your core and learn more about your body along the way? All you need to grab is a mat, and Alexandra will lead the way. 

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