I was so relieved to find a teacher who was clear and articulate on the matter of core stability. It is such a big buzz word in the world of yoga, pilates, and fitness. Simon does a great job in this video of explaining the different ways to create core stability.
As Simon shows the key to completing many challenging yoga poses in a way strong (that is with a powerful and firm core) but calm is to generate core stability in such a way that you can still breathe into the belly and which still allows your spine to move.
While no movement is right or wrong, I know from my own practice if I try to 'suck it all in' it just immobilises my lower back and gives me nowhere to breathe but into my chest, which makes me feel tense.
However, using the other method--where the belly seems to move out (but still moves in relative to a relaxed abdomen) I feel strong, powerful but at the same time relaxed. My handstands and arm balances become light. My lower back feels unstrained. I am happy and calm. And that is just the type of yoga practice that I want.
I hope this video helps you as much as Simon's teachings have helped me. You can link to Simon's classes and teachings at www.yoga synergy.com