Core Whore

ball sitter

I’m a core whore. I have no problem admitting this. Some people may not be familiar with the term “core whore”, but allow me to explain: You see, almost every single day (occasionally I miss a few) I do a minimum of 50 crunches and 50 abdominal isometrics. I rarely have a day when I’m not doing a little something to keep my core rock solid.

So, I’m a core whore, but it comes with some rewards. I’ve had a whole batch of babies and I can still rock a bikini without offending the eyes of fellow swimmers (too much). My core keeps me from immediately falling to the ground when getting hit playing roller derby. It makes it easier to get out of bed in the morning. Sounds silly, but there are a great many people that struggle with that for one reason or another. You probably know some.

The best part about keeping my core in shape is that it keeps me nearly free of any back pain. Basically, your core muscles consist of all the muscles from your pelvic region to the tip of your spine. To further generalize it, you could say your torso minus the head. These muscles serve many functions. Among these functions are back and pelvic stability which makes you harder to knock over and gives you better balance. But, also keeps your spine in good shape which means fewer back problems and less back pain.corediagram-e1413476693680

Keeping your core in good order will help keep everything right where it belongs. True story, you wouldn’t believe what your pelvic floor muscles actually hold in there. You’re diaphragm is also a part of your core. There are several reasons why it’s crucial to our well being and one of those reasons are hernias. If you don’t keep your core in good working order, you’re likely to experience one.

All of the muscles in your core work together as a group. Often when you’re working one set of core muscles, you are also using other core muscles to support it. Core muscles that are weak have to rely on other muscles to compensate. This isn’t good because then you run into problems like muscle fatigue, nerve problems and ultimately something which will cause you pain and discomfort. You gotta have a strong back in this tattoo business and that’s the truth. A strong back is part of a strong core and your best defense in helping reduce back and neck pain.

There is simply far too much information regarding your core to blog about only once. I will be blogging about this again. This is kind of a core 101 without getting to technical about it. So let’s start with the first step in helping to keep your core strong. I’m going to start out easy on you and give some great advice right here. It all starts with balls. Big balls. You know, those big obnoxious exercise balls you see the gyms and on sale at every grocery store? Those big silly balls that come with exercise videos are everywhere these days. Ok, so get it all out; the notion that I’m telling you to go out and buy some balls.  Go ahead and snicker about all of those ball jokes that just zipped through your head (You know you want to).

Now let me explain how this is a great way to start building your core rather easily. This is great for people who don’t like to work out or for those who are just getting started. You can passively begin to strengthen your core from something as simple as sitting on a large exercise ball while watching TV. All you have to do is sit with your feet placed on the ground and push yourself back and forth using your legs. Kind of like when people tilt back their chairs on their back legs with the front legs off the ground (which also strengthens your core by the way) Just the back and forth of the ball will work your muscles. In fact, sitting on the ball in general forces your core muscles to work because they help keep you balanced on the ball. You won’t even realize you’re doing it. This is just sitting on the ball. You wouldn’t believe what kind of core strength you can get when you actually exercise with it. The-exercise-ball

There is now an exercise ball chair available that comes in every color of the rainbow. An exercise ball chair can be used in leu of a traditional tattoo stool or office chair while tattooing. I’m starting to run across more and more tattoo artists who are using them and everyone raves about how awesome they are. These chairs also save your ass during long tattoo sessions. Try one long tattoo session on a yoga ball chair and I won’t need to convince you. Another cool thing about these chairs is that the ball is made of PVC, so it’s a nonporous surface and the frame of the chair is washable as well.  Here’s a quick snippet about exercise chairs:  http://www.livestrong.com/article/287638-pros-cons-of-sitting-on-a-stability-ball/ Also, Here’s ten reasons why you need an exercise ball chair: http://www.gearfire.net/10-reasons-to-use-an-exercise-ball-as-your-chair/

Exercise ball chairs usually cost between $70 and $100 with the ball included. In my opinion, it’s a small price to pay for the comfort of my ass. It’s great because they’re on wheels just like stools are and I like that the potential exists for a bumper car situation in a shop having more than one of these and a couple of artists who succumb to boredom. When the ball gets old and you need a new one, you can find a replacement ball in the $14.00 to $30 range and it’s like getting a whole new chair!

Look! I posted a link right to those chairs for you! http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_2?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=excercise+ball+chairs&rh=i%3Aaps%2Ck%3Aexcercise+ball+chairs three-ball-chairs

If you’re feeling brave and you want to move to the next level with your ball, there are a ton of great workouts that can help you develop a great core by doing them regularly. I realize that there’s probably a group of beardy, flannelled neigh sayers. But don’t knock it till you try it. Close the shades, wait till everyone is asleep, get the pets out of the room (trust me, I accidently ran over my Chihuahua once) and give it a try. One good work with the ball will make your tummy tum feel like you went a round with Rocky. That’s a good thing my friend, because often pain is progress. Here’s a few you can try: Now, this first link has some killer moves if you can get past all the bullshit abs and I had a problem with the site being rather slow. I’ll blame the ads. So, if you have a little patience this is a good source. http://www.leanitup.com/carve-out-your-abs-with-these-swiss-ball-exercises/2/  This next site is a great source for all different types of exercises you can do with your ball. It’s just like me, it’s not pretty and it doesn’t fuck around, but it’s informative. The site is great because it groups exercises into categories: http://www.ball-exercises.com/exercises/abs/index.html#3 so, being the Core Whore that I am, this won’t be my last post on tips to help strengthen your core. Expect many more.

In other news; March was crazy for me and I have a lot of catching up to do. Good news is I’ll be blogging extra for the month of May to catch up. In the spirit of catching up, I would like to take a moment and thank TATTOO CLOUD who is a wonderful sponsor and has made my life so much easier! I’ve got a great blog coming up about how TATTOO CLOUD saved my ass at the Philly convention this year. It’s a pretty good story. If you haven’t checked out TATTOO CLOUD and all they have to offer, I’ll make it easy and post a link here for yah: https://tattoocloud.com/  I‘m honestly the happiest I’ve ever been having TATTOO CLOUD design and host my website. They’re really that good! (And yes, I realize when I type in all caps that it means I’m yelling).

Stay on the lookout; I’ll be posting again soon!tg-icon-144x144-d3f637934589e111090da5c43c81027c

Thanks, Cee Jay Inky Jones

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