Essential Plank Workout

The plank is the gold standard strength movement for the core, and the core is the basis of all movements, spine stability and athletics. Thus, it is safe to say that planks should be an important part of your workout routine.

Do not know how to plant correctly? Ever made a board? Do you want to become better on the boards? We’ve got you covered! Read more.

First, there are three things to think about while holding a board:

Correct alignment: If you are in a plank position, take a Moment to perform some body checks. Are your ears, shoulders, hips and ankles in a straight line? Do you pull your heels back? Do your eyes look a little at the floor in front of your hands to align the neck neutrally?
Tighten your whole body tightly: in a plank position, think about systemically squeezing all muscle groups. Start with your calves, then quads, hamstrings, glutes, core and finally push your arms into the floor to engage behind your shoulder blades. Keep asking yourself during your plank exercise: “am I tightening as hard as I can?”
Perform 10-second Holds: to ensure the strong contraction mentioned above, it is recommended to hold the boards for 10 Seconds, followed by a Pause of 2-3 seconds, repeating the cycle until the correct shape can no longer be maintained. This Timing allows for greater core contraction, greater strength gains, and a reduced risk of health-issue (compared to longer boards).

Below is a workout that includes several variations of planks to target your entire core, as well as instructions on the appropriate shape for each exercise. This training develops from a standard board on the floor to crawl and walk straight with a rigid and strong core. When you do any of these exercises, you return to the same plank questions: is my body in a straight line? Do I actively tighten my muscles while moving in different positions?

TRAINING

BOARD

Movement: Place Your Forearms on the Floor and place Your Elbows directly under Your Shoulders. Strain each muscle in your body and lift it from the top of your head to the heels in a straight line. Perform 6 sets of 10-second takes with a 3-second break between sets.

Change option: to facilitate this exercise, leave your knees on the floor. Make sure your hips stay in harmony with your shoulders and knees.

SIDE OF THE BOARD

The movement: place an elbow directly under your shoulder on the floor on the same side and make sure your shoulders are square forward. Your shoulders should also match your hips and heels. With a very tight and tense core, move the floor away from you and remain active in the shoulder joint. Your feet can be stacked or the upper foot in front of the ground, with the blades of your feet pushing into the ground. Perform 6 sets of 10-second takes with a 3-second break between sets. Switch sides, repeat the 6 sets of 10 seconds with a 3-second pause between sets.

BOARD AT YOUR FINGERTIPS

Movement: start in a hand or forearm position, with your body in a narrow straight line and your feet about shoulder width apart. With minimal movement in the rest of your body, stretch one arm in line with your shoulder. Hold for a count of two, drop it and repeat on the other side. Perform 3 sets of 20 minutes.

Change option: to facilitate this exercise, leave your knees on the floor. Make sure your hips stay in harmony with your shoulders and knees.

SIDE PLANK WITH LEG LIFT

Movement: while holding a side plank, lift your upper leg about 6 inches up and slightly back to operate your glutes. Lower Your Leg to the Starting Position. Perform 3 sets of 10 repetitions. Change sides and repeat 3 sets of 10 repetitions.

Modification option: to facilitate this exercise, lay your knees on the floor and raise your upper knee from the lower knee.

STIR THE POT

The train: place your elbows on a stability ball and find a strong, straight plank position. Make sure your shoulders are just above your elbows and your ears are pulled down. While keeping the rest of your body as calm and stable as possible, draw a circle with your forearms clockwise. Stop when you have completed a full circle, and then draw a circle counterclockwise. Perform 3 sets of 10 Circles in each Direction.

Change option: to facilitate this exercise, leave your knees on the floor. Make sure your hips stay in harmony with your shoulders and knees.

 

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