Our Power Engine – Our bodily foundation
Our power engine – better known as powerhouse – is a deep-seated muscle synergy that supports our pelvis and lumbar spine. Our Power Engine gives us core stability.
For the professionals among us, our power engine – the model concept of lumbopelvic control and core stability – defines the muscle synergy between the Transversus Abdominis, the deep fibres of the Lumbar Multifidus, the pelvic floor muscles, the diaphragm and the weight-bearing muscles of the pelvis.
To find out exactly how to successfully activate your power engine – powerhouse – read our blog post How to activate my deep muscle corset system. It pays off!
After you have found out how to activate your power engine, try the 3 challenges. In all 3 challenges, we first show you how to do the exercise correctly and then how to do it ‘the wrong way’. This way you can clearly experience the difference;) Let’s get straight to our first challenge. Let’s test HOW our power engine stabilizes our pelvis while we take turns lifting our knees.
We have summarised all 3 challenges in our vlog right below with lots of meaningful pictures of the body and its anatomy. Click now, sit back, watch and relax!
What will you see in the video?
0:10 Core Challenge 1: The Knee Lift
1:10 What can go wrong with the Knee Lift
1:55 Core-Challenge 2: The Long Line
3:00 What can go wrong with the Long Line
3:45 Core Challenge 3: Arm Knee Lift
Challenge 1: Test your powerhouse with the Knee Lift
Lie on your back in a neutral pelvic position and bend your knees. Use the ABC principle to activate your powerhouse
A – pull the skin above your navel towards your spine and gently hold against it with your fingers.
B – press your heels together and
C – squeeze the inside of your thighs.
Then alternately lift your right and left knee upwards at a right angle. Make sure your pelvis does not tilt down, up or to the side.
If you are successful, your pelvis will not move and your belly will not bulge outwards. You can follow this well in the video from minute 00:10.
What can go wrong if we don’t pay attention …
Be aware of your pelvic position
It is incorrect and problematic to start in a non-functional pelvic position. In a pelvic position that is either posteriorly or anteriorly tilted. It is also problematic if we do not use the ABC principle when raising and lowering our knees to maintain the activation of our power engine. Core stability can NOT be guaranteed in this way.
You can see this well in the video from minute 01:10.
These dysfunctions cause overuse of the superficial leg muscles, such as the Rectus Femoris. We can only avoid this overuse if we use our deep hip flexor muscle, the illiopsoas! Fortunately, this is automatically the case when we use our powerhouse:)
Ready for the 2nd Challenge?
Good! Let’s test how our power engine stabilizes our pelvis and chest when we stretch and bend our arms hetero-laterally.
Powerhouse Challenge 2: The Long Line
Lie on your back in a neutral pelvic position and bend your knees. Again use the ABC principle to activate your Power Engine along with your shoulder girdle stabilizers and extend and flex your arms and legs from this position.
If you are successful, there will be no movement in the pelvis. Also, your abdominal wall will not bulge outwards and your chest will not lift upwards. In addition, your entire spine will rest on the mat.
You can follow this well in the video from minute 01:55.
What can go wrong if we don’t pay attention …
Be aware I use the ABC principle continuously
As in the 1st challenge, it would be incorrect to start in a non-functional pelvic position. In a pelvic position that is either posteriorly or anteriorly tilted. It is equally problematic if we do not use the ABC principle to activate our Power Engine BEFORE stretching and bending our arms and legs. This is fatal because the continuous use of the ABC principle helps our body to maintain the activation of our Power Engine. And yes, our Power Engine supports our lumbar and pelvic stability when we bend and extend our arms and legs.
You can see these dysfunctions well in the video from minute 03:00.
Now for the 3rd Challenge…
Powerhouse Challenge 3: The Arm and Knee Lift
Everything we highlighted in the Long Line exercise applies just as much to the ‘Arm and Knee Lift’. Watch it closely in the video from minute 03:45 and ‘flow’ with what you already know.
Try it & fly with it!
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