Core body strength

I was just wondering what all of you do to build up core body strength…or if you even do anything at all.

I have been doing pilates alot lately, also jumping on a trampoline doing flips and other acrobatics have helped build my core body strength. Another thing i do is on a pull up bar i do a chin up and then bring my knees to my chin while hanging.

I have found that having a strong core has helped me immensley with unicycling and mountain biking.

I’m lazy, so I just ride a lot to build core strength. :thinking: :wink:

ha. yea riding is a pretty good core strength builder.

but i like doing it off the uni too, because then i can build the srength faster.

I go to my local climbing gym and climb for 2-3 hrs a night, two nights a week, then I’ll do a cardio / weight workout on one or two additional nights. Rock climbing is core-intensive, perhaps moreso than unicycling. I find that climbing is great cross-training for unicycling but not so much the other way around… I need to do more core strengthening exercises.

Some core exercises that I do at the gym (not often enough) include crunches (done on a rack), leg / knee lifts, back extensions, standing good mornings, squats, lunges, pull-ups and pull-downs. Keep in mind, when starting to use weights with your core muscles, to start with very light weights even if you are able to use heavier ones. You’ll get plenty sore with the light weights for your first few weeks of workout; you could injure yourself if you overdo it at the beginning.

There’s a good article on core exercises here, at

I sit on my chair and talk on msn… so it makes me have a round core “strenth”

hey thanks for that link.

i wish that i were able to climbg more often, i love climbing. The rec. center near my house has an awesome climbing wall, but there is no one ever there to belay me so its lame. and they dont allow free climbing.

Imo, I would think that you can overdo the “strength traning” thing. If you’re riding muni alot, as I do 4-5 X per week, adding hours of other “workout” time might be overkill. I’m pretty much working my whole body during muni rides, not to mention the fact that I’m averaging over 100,000 pedal revolutions (with plenty of resistence!) per month! If Iwere to start lifting weights and all that, I would probably bulk up too much for good efficient muni riding. Plus I would be carrying all the extra added weight around, even though it would be added muscle mass. Picture it; what would be a more ideal body type for muni:? Arnold schwartzeneger, or Lance Armstrong? The latter obviously.:slight_smile: I think efficiency is very important, but how much muscle is enough? The body has a way of finding its own “balance” based on the activity you are doing. Eat a well-balanced diet, get plenty of sleep and ride often and you will get to the point of fitness required for what you want to do. IF you want to be a body builder, lift weights!

Yeah, but even Lance does core strength training. Too much of an endurance sport burns out your muscles instead of building them up. Although, how many of us focus mostly on the endurance aspect?

Yes he does, but most of us who ride muni don’t come CLOSE to the absolute PHENOMENAL energy output expended by Armstrong during his training and actual competetive riding. That’s why, for me, riding muni is more than enough of a workout in and of itself. I do happen to stretch and do push-ups and 150 cruches per day just because it’s part of my normal routine.

right, i agree that it can be overkill. Im not nessecarily getting bulky though, i have just been training my muscles off of the uni in order to have more strength and more control on the uni.
My daily routine usually consists of 45 pull ups(not all at once), 100 crunches, and about 35 minutes of pilates training. I do that before school every morning, and then after school i get in as much riding as i can. It keeps me in pretty top notch shape.
I eat a well balanced diet, in fact you could call me a health freak. Protein shakes are my favorite food haha. Some nice flax oil. yum haha

I do a lot of climbing to build core strength. I would do it on a regular climbing wall, but there aren’t any close to me so I make do with anything I can find. :slight_smile:

Ive been doing yoga lately and have been realy surprized about how much core strength it builds.

yoga and pilates is pretty similar.

i do yoga to relax.
i love it.

pilates is more straining.

What is “flax oil”, and what is the health benefit? Right now I take only a big multi vit daily, but I’m open to other good stuff if it helps!:slight_smile:

yoga! Forgot about that one! I’m gonna look into that…doesn’t that help you get limber as well?

flax oil comes from flax seeds, the oil contains omega threes and omega sixes i believe. Those are essential fatty acids, which basically just increase your endurance and strength. Flax oil also helps you to heal quickly and you wont get as sore with it.

unisteez, I see you’re a gnar shredder… there still has to be some snow around. Hike it. For core strength, I dont enjoy doing exercises, I’d rather be doing something I love. So, my cross training for one sport is cross training for another. For example, I telemark ski in the winter, great balance, leg strength, and core strength. This improves my unicycling. In the same respect, unicycling in the summer improves my skiing (and unicycling in the winter). I do some climbing to work my upper body, but I certainly dont do exercises for the sake of working out. So, if I were you, I’d find some other activities to compliment your unicycling. Slacklining is good for balance, and is relatively inexpensive.

If you’re really looking for core strength exercises, I’d recommend planks. Lay down on your back, lift your feet 6" above the ground. Do that till you cant, then do it again. Also, do traditional planks where you lay on the ground face down, put your elbows at 90 degrees, and rest on your forearms, keeping your stomach off the ground. Do maybe 5 planks for 30 seconds apiece to get started. Side planks are good too… lay on your side and rest on one arm, keeping your body straight. They’re hard to explain, but they’re great exercises for core strength, commonly done by skiers.

Hope that helps a little bit.

sugarloafur- The excercise you were talking about, planks, is a pilates exercise. those can be pretty killer if you do them for long enough.
i love excercising and enjoy yoga and pilates. so it works out for me.

man, telemarking is crazy. i tried it once, and that was enough haha. its fun, but its crazy hard. i would rather snowboard and cross country ski.
yea there is a little bit of snow still in some places.
up high there is still a good amount.

i have 10 fourteener climbs planned for this summer, so training for those has definately helped make me stronger.

For core strength I ride my unicycle badly;) . Can’t help it, I just do. I really have noticed in increase in my core strength due to the excessive and often extreme corrections I’m constantly making to stay on the #%&* unicycle.

For an old codger, I’ve always kept myself in reasonably good physical shape and I totally agree with sugarloafur. Find other activities to keep your fitness level up. I’ve NEVER had the patience to go to a gym and do excersices. I just love being active and getting out of doors and that has the added benifit of providing me with excercise.

Hiking, backpacking, mountain b*king, unicycling, skiing, kayaking. It’s all good.:smiley:

Telemarking is crazy fun. I enjoy all disciplines, alpine, tele and snowboarding, though I dont do much boarding.

10 fourteeners! That’s impressive. Any involving gear (rock climbing)? I just said ‘climbing’ in my original post, but should have specified as rock climbing. At first I thought you were talking about 10 different 5.14 climbing routes planned for the summer, which would be insane, since a 5.14 is incredibly difficult. Then I realized what you were actually talking about. Which ones are you doing?