Core strength refers to the muscular control needed to maintain stability around the lower back and pelvis. These muscles not only have to be strong but need to respond quickly to stabilise the lower back and pelvis during movements such as running, jumping and kicking. Core muscles include the pelvic floor, diaphragm and the abdominal muscles.

Unfortunately many of us lead sedentary lifestyles these days which means the core muscles don’t get the repetitive use and toning they need to perform efficiently. Back problems and hip problems, headaches and fatigue are common problems associated with poor core stability as the joints and muscles around the core are liable to move beyond their ideal range. For active or sporty people the effect is magnified and they may be more prone to injury as a result.

But it’s not all doom and gloom, preventative or corrective measures can be taken. Deep tissue massage can help bring weak muscles into alignment and targeted exercises such as The Plank can strengthen the core muscles. Yoga, Pilates and the Alexander technique can also be very helpful.