Spot Reducing: the usually futile effort to exercise one part of the body, as the thighs, in hopes of reducing the amount of fat stored in that area. (dictionary.com)
If spot reducing is a “usually futile” why do we have “Core” workouts?
There is some very (very) limited scientific evidence that it might be possible to get “regional fat loss” with exercise. It is so limited it would be a gamble to base your valuable exercise time on it.
If you do core exercises to strengthen your back, there is pretty strong evidence there is not one specific exercise to help reduce back pain. Studies show that regular exercise in general helps to reduce back pain, but so far, no one type of exercise has been shown to be better than another.
So, if core exercises do not reduce weight around your middle, and do not prevent back pain, why spend time doing them?
The job of your core is to stabilize your spine while moving your arms and legs. The core very rarely works by itself in movements of daily life. So, doing exercises like planks do not ‘teach’ the core to do it’s job. The core muscles are also not there to lift your upper body when you are lying down, as in a sit up or a crunch. Their main job is to stabilize, not move your trunk.
Since time is one of your best commodities, you have to ask, is it worth it to spend time doing a core exercise routine?
From all we know about how the body works, it is clearly more effective to incorporate core stabilization into your strength training exercises. This not only teaches the core to do its job, but saves you time too!
Keep Moving, Be Well