The 3 Best Core Exercises for Runners - Buffalo Rehab Group
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The 3 Best Core Exercises for Runners

Nov 29, 2023 | Running

Are you incorporating core exercise into your workout?

As a runner, overlooking core strength can hinder your performance and increase the risk of injuries.

In this blog, we’ll delve into the significance of core strength for runners and introduce three effective exercises to help you build a strong and stable core.

Frozen shoulder, or adhesive capsulitis, can be a complicated diagnosis.

Our shoulder is a joint and needs to be stabilized where our arm bone and shoulder blade connect. Sometimes, the capsule where these connect becomes inflamed or tight – leading to frozen shoulder.

The most common symptoms of frozen shoulder are pain and stiffness.

Because of this, you may have difficulty reaching overhead, across your body, or to the side.

Why Core Strength Matters for Runners

Your core, which includes your abdominal, lower back, and pelvic muscles, is the powerhouse of your body. Strong core muscles provide several advantages for runners:

  • Improved Stability: A strong core helps stabilize your pelvis and spine, reducing excessive movements while running. This stability enhances your balance and overall control.
  • Better Posture:A stable core promotes proper running posture, preventing you from slouching or leaning forward. This, in turn, optimizes your biomechanics and reduces the risk of strain or injury.
  • Efficient Energy TransferCore strength facilitates the transfer of energy from your upper body to your lower body, making your running strides more efficient and less energy-draining.
  • Injury PreventionA stable core helps distribute impact forces evenly, reducing the risk of overuse injuries such as shin splints and stress fractures.

Now, let’s explore three core-strengthening exercises specifically tailored for runners:

Dead Bug

The Dead Bug exercise targets your entire core.

Lie on your back with your arms extended toward the ceiling and your knees bent at a 90-degree angle.

Engage your core muscles to press your lower back into the floor.

Slowly extend your right leg and lower your right arm behind your head, hovering above the floor.

Return to the starting position and repeat on the other side.

Perform 2-3 sets of 10 reps per side.

Bird Dog

The Bird Dog exercise enhances core stability, particularly targeting the muscles of your lower back and glutes.

Begin on your hands and knees, ensuring your wrists are under your shoulders and your knees are under your hips.

Engage your core to maintain a neutral spine.

Extend your right arm forward and your left leg backward, keeping them parallel to the ground.

Hold for a few seconds, then return to the starting position.

Repeat with the opposite arm and leg.

Perform 2-3 sets of 10 reps per side.


The Plank is a classic core-strengthening exercise that engages the entire core, including the abdominals, obliques, and lower back.

Begin in a push-up position with your hands directly under your shoulders.

Engage your core and create a straight line from your head to your heels.

Hold this position, keeping your body in a straight line, for as long as you can, aiming for 30-60 seconds or more.

To modify a plan, you can start on your elbows.

Incorporate these core-strengthening exercises into your regular routine to help improve your running performance, stability, and overall strength.

A strong core not only makes you a more efficient runner but also reduces the risk of injuries, allowing you to enjoy your runs to the fullest.

Are you a runner struggling with pain or injury?

Unlike other medical providers, Buffalo Rehab Group understands your need to run. Get back to running pain- and injury-free with help from a Physical Therapist who loves running, too!

Click below to learn more about our specialized Physical Therapy services for runners: