To Control Your Center of Gravity - Strengthening Core Muscles
By Kate Feinberg Robins
To find your center is to control your center of gravity.
The most literal meaning of "finding your center" in ballet and capoeira is to physically control your center of gravity by developing and using strong core muscles. Many of the pains, imbalances, and physical vulnerabilities that we experience in our everyday lives can be addressed by strengthening our abdominal, back, oblique, and hip muscles.
Lower back pain is what first drew me (Kate) to Pilates. Many years after I had stopped training ballet professionally, I took a Pilates class and realized that my back pain was due to weak abdominals. I began to practice Pilates daily, which got my core muscles into shape and all but eliminated my back pain. I continued with low-impact Pilates throughout my pregnancy and post-partum, strengthening and rebuilding my core muscles in correct alignment after the bodily trauma of pregnancy and childbirth.
If you'd like guidance in figuring out which of your core muscles you need to strengthen and finding exercises that work for you, try these options: