Want to workout your entire body, but limited on space and equipment?? Don’t worry, Planks will get it all! There are so many variations that anyone of any fitness level can do them. Let’s talk about technique. Planks require full body engagement and that is what makes them so beneficial, but also extremely hard to do correctly. Caution: for anyone with shoulder and knee injuries these may not be beneficial to you. Please make sure to check with us or your doctor if you’re unsure if you should try these. Start on your forearms and knees, draw your belly button into the spine, squeeze the glutes (butt) and then lift up to the toes. If this is too difficult, stay on your knees and forearms and work on building up the strength in your arms, core, and glutes before going to the toes.
Check in: You should be in a straight line from your heels to the crown of your head. Imagine…..pressing the floor away with your forearms, this will activate the muscles in the chest and back and put you in the proper position. Get a watch and time yourself on your first attempt, then write that down and keep it someone for future reference. Try working up to 1 minute then 2 minutes and then for further challenge progress to a harder version. Don’t worry there’s always a way to make a plank more challenging as you gain strength!
Above is the standard plank that we all have probably seen, however, we can modify that to make it a little less challenging. Start on your forearms and knees or use an elevated surface. Place your forearms on a bench instead of the floor, building up the strength to then go to the floor.
Let’s talk about variations! So many to choose from, here are just a few that we like. Remember to master the planks above before moving onto other variations.
The Side Plank: Start with a knee bent, then progress to straight legs. Check in: Are you in a straight line? Imagine……you’re between 2 panes of glass.
Add motion: The Side Plank Twist and Side Plank Crunch For the twist start in your side plank, either on your knee or with long legs and slowly rotate forward, slightly lifting the hips and threading the top arm underneath the body. Adding motion will throw you off balance, so remember to go slow and control the movement until you gain more stability and control in the shoulder. You should feel a twisting sensation in your abs and spine.
For your side plank crunch start in a side plank, either on your knee or with long legs. Then, slowly bend the top knee and elbow, squeezing the obliques (side of the waist) to bring the knee and elbow close together. Extend the arm and leg back out long and repeat. Start with a couple of repetitions and build from there.
Do you have more questions???
Let us help you master these moves and build incredible strength and stability in your entire body.
Call (657) 231-6207 or email us today and we can start helping you tomorrow!