Whether you have a disability or are completely healthy, most of your functional movements are largely dependent upon the strength of your core. People who have a weak core can have a higher likelihood for injury and limited mobility, especially if they have any type of disability.

The muscles of the core are in the belly as well as in the mid and lower back, including the neck, hips and shoulders.

If you have a disability, there are several core exercises you can do a few times per week to increase strength in this key areas:


By just lifting shoulders off the floor, you are actually flexing your core muscles. You also can flex the abs by lifting your hips off the floor. This is called a reverse crunch. Or, you can flex the abs by doing seated crunches. This requires you to bend forward a few inches and tense the stomach muscles for ten seconds. Do this 10 times and you will feel it.

Lower Back

Lie on your stomach and lift your legs from the floor. This will work your low back, rear and hamstrings. You also can do this when you are sitting down - just bend forward in your chair and bring your chest to your knees.

Lower Body

The leg muscles can be worked by doing leg curls and leg extensions with various sizes of ankle weights. (see image below). A one-legged squat also is good to build leg strength; just be sure that you have something solid to hold onto for balance.

CanDo Comfort Ankle & Wrist Weights 3-pound Set

Continue to work on your core strength using the exercises above, and you will have more strength to do what you enjoy every day.