T Nation

Advice to Keep Core Tight?

I’m making decent gains But I know everyone always tells me to keep my core tight during all my lifts and I tend to lose focus on my core as I’m contracting or thinking about the motion. The only time I have kept a tight core through a whole workout is with a belt because I feel that push and keeps me connected.

But any advice or tricks to keep that focus on my core? I know it should be a simple fix But I struggle when my mind is trying to focus on contractions and feeling.

Don’t breathe until a rep is complete. Push outward constantly.

Stand up straight, and exhale as much as possible. Keep exhaling till it feels very uncomfortable. If you reach down and touch your trunk/ab/obliques, they will be contracted. Attempt to mimic this feeling during compound movements where spinal and trunk integrity are important.

Forget about your core and get EVERYTHING tight and learn how to do that without a belt.

Inhale using your diaphragm until it feels you have no more room and then inhale some more. Your belly should be very distended by this time. Hold that air. Squeeze down on it until you feel the pressure shooting up into your skull and out of your butthole. Squeeze the bar (for every lift this is always going to help), and then complete the lift. Do not exhale until the rep is complete, and repeat this process each rep.

Practice bracing throughout the day, not just when training. Do it occasionally when you’re just sitting down. Take in a big breath, brace hard and create as much pressure as you can, then poke at your sides to make sure it isn’t soft. Once you make it a habit, you’ll eventually begin doing it subconsciously. Later you’ll just think of getting tight rather than focusing specifically on your abs.

[quote]Mavil161718 wrote:
The only time I have kept a tight core through a whole workout is with a belt because I feel that push and keeps me connected. [/quote]

Why not just wear a belt?

If you are a fellow bro like me who enjoys the occassional squat rack cheat curl and benches on monday, I would rather you wear a belt and put the focus on contracting your glutes.

A simple way to think of bracing is how would you stand if you were about to take a hard punch to the stomach, if that doesn’t jive with you think of a huge weight falling out of the sky and onto your back. Its a very simple thing thats very easily done wrong, most people breathe in way too much from the mouth and the pressure just stays in their chest and head. Like previous posters said, use a deep breathe into the diaphragm.