Holding the plank can help to strengthen your core Training for an obstacle course race really requires core training. In fact, they could be called obstacle "cores" races. When I say core, I don't just mean the abdominal muscles, but the entire core which includes every muscle group from the shoulders to the hips. A strong core allows us to be more powerful in our physical actions. When we have a strong core, we are able to use our entire body to complete a certain movement, instead of just one limb. For example, in our kickboxing classes, we first teach the basic form of punches and kicks. Once a member has learned the basic form, they are able to "get behind" their punches and kicks, by using their core strength. Core strength allows for a more solid and forceful punch or kick....many of which I would not want to be on the receiving end of. Core strength also helps to improve balance....and balance was definitely needed during obstacle number 11 of the Spartan Military Race. Let's talk Log Hop. Sounds pretty simple right? Just like stepping stones? Not exactly. The Log Hop was created Spartan style, which means it was definitely a challenge. This obstacle consisted of about one dozen logs sat on end at various heights, each approximately three feet apart. It didn't look too intimidating, until you were up on the logs and imagining how bad it would feel if you a) fell, or b) had to complete 30 penalty burpees. Well, I for one said "No Thanks" to burpees and flew across those logs like there was no tomorrow! In fact, all of the Summit Fit Dojo Spartans handled this obstacle like champs due to all of the core training they got in prior to the event, and the kick butt attitudes they had on the day of the event! That's right. Whether they were planking, bridging, or completing absurd numbers of medicine ball lunge-n-twists, our Summit Fit Dojo Spartans were ready to battle the course with strong cores!