I hear the term all the time, but I’m not exactly sure what “core training” means. Could you please explain and tell me how it’s different from ab training?
Core training certainly is a very popular catchphrase these days. Too popular for my tastes, actually. Back when I was first coming up in the weightlifting scene there was no such animal as core training. We just performed lots of overhead lifts like the standing press. Trying to lift 250 pounds over your head and hold it there for a few seconds will work your core really good.
To answer your question, core training is simply strengthening the layer of abdominal muscles that lie beneath the Rectus abdominus muscles, which comprise the “six-pack” with which you’re familiar. These are the muscles that work to stabilize your body when you’re moving. They also keep your internal organs internal, so they are obviously of vital importance to your overall well-being.
While there are a lot of exotic ways to improve your core my suggestion is to concentrate on standing free weight exercises, preferably with dumbbells and preferably performed alternately rather than with your arms in unison. As your body tried to keep itself righted your core muscles will be worked. It’s simple, effective and not only works your core, but all of your muscles.