Core Concepts: Understanding the Complexity of the Spinal Stabilizing Systems in Local and Global Injury Prevention and Treatment

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Lindsay Warren California Baptist University

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Russell Baker University of Idaho

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Alan Nasypany University of Idaho

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Jeffrey Seegmiller University of Idaho

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The core is central to almost all extremity movements, especially in athletics. Running, jumping, kicking, and throwing are dependent on core function to create a stable base for movement. Poor core strength, endurance, stiffness, control, coordination, or a combination thereof can lead to decreased performance and increased risk of injury. Due to the core’s many complex elements, none of which are more or less important than the next, it is imperative that athletic trainers have a systematic and comprehensive plan for assessing and treating patients with stability or motor control dysfunctions of the entire spinal stabilizing system. The purpose of this clinical commentary is to outline the structural (anatomical) components of the core and their functions, establish the elements of core stability (functional), review these elements’ importance in decreasing the risk of injury, and discuss the application of this information in athletic training.

Lindsay Warren is the Clinical Education Coordinator of Athletic Training Education in the Department of Kinesiology at California Baptist University, Riverside, CA.

Russell Baker is the Clinical Education Coordinator of Athletic Training Education in the Department of Movement Sciences at the University of Idaho, Moscow, ID.

Alan Nasypany is the Director of Athletic Training Education in the Department of Movement Sciences at the University of Idaho, Moscow, ID.

Jeffrey Seegmiller is the Director of Idaho WWAMI Medical Education Program at the University of Idaho, Moscow, ID.

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