Stabilization exercises, stability exercises, and core exercises are often discussed on social media, but what are core exercises? In order to “workout” the core, anatomically speaking, it has to be in some forms of a stabilization exercises. So what are stabilization exercises? In fact, any exercise can be a stabilization exercise if it’s performed with a specific muscular control that creates stability in the spine. A stable spine can be created by activating the right muscles at the right time, that means stabilization exercises are exercises that emphasize a stable spine when other physical demands are carried out. For example, engaging the lats (Latissimus dorsi muscles) when performing a squat can be a functional stabilization exercise for patients with low back pain. Keep in mind that not all stabilization exercises are the same and each individual would benefit from different types and levels of stabilization exercises. A general rule is you want the stabilization exercises to create the most spinal stability while exerting the least physical stress on the spine. Doing improper stabilization exercises over a long period of time can damage the structural integrity of the spine and make it more susceptible to injury. Stabilization exercises are a key component in our physiotherapy treatment and they are not just beneficial to patients with low back pain. Our skills in physiotherapy allow us to design the stabilization exercises that can be both safe and effective.
Richard Kung, Registered Physiotherapist
Doctor of Physiotherapy, Bachelor of Science (Kinesiology)