Planking is one of the exercises that many people love to hate. Because let’s face it… it’s flippen hard! But is all that difficulty worth it in the end?
The plank, also called a front hold or abdominal bridge is a core strength exercise that involves maintaining a position similar to a push-up for the maximum possible time.
If you’ve never tried to plank then don’t be fooled. It looks super easy, however, holding the position takes strength and endurance in your abs, core and back. In fact, it’s normal for Fitness beginners to start with a ten-second plank and work up from that. Here are some greats tips if you’re just starting out.
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5 Health Benefits of Doing Planks
Planking is a simple, but yet a challenging exercise that you will likely experience at some stage or another when you become apart of the tribe at Plus. It’s an awesome exercise for building core strength, mastering balance and tightening those problem areas.
- A Toned Belly:The Plank tones your belly by building your deep inner core muscles aka that much coveted six-pack! By planking regularly, both men and women can tone up their tummy and achieve noticeable muscle tone. Remember that these will only show when you shed fat but hey…crossFit can do that too!
- Improved Flexibility: One of the biggest benefits of planking is improved flexibility and stability around your shoulders, collarbone and shoulder blades. It will also stretch out your hamstrings, foot arches and toes so it can be a good warm up and cool down exercise. Side planks, are yet another great midline core building exercise. Harder but also stretch out your side muscles make them a great to follow a challenging workout.
- Back Pain Resolution: Planking is great for back issues, strengthens your back muscles in there entirety, your internal core and stability muscle. It’s important though to get the right posture to achieve this. One of the common mistakes you see we see people make when they tackle this exercise is poor planking posture. This may involve your head being down, forgetting to breathe, your back up or your elbows too spaced out. Check out this article on how to achieve the perfect plank position.
- Tightened Pelvic Floor: More women than men might be familiar with this term, especially those who have given birth. The Plank combined with a Kegel Squeeze can improve bladder control. This is achieved by Drawing your pelvis muscles up and holding them high and tight (squeezing).Repeating this every day will help strengthen your pelvic floor.
- Improved Balance: The Plank does improve your balance and general core strength. Which also has a huge impact on the other areas of your training.
Learning to plank in the correct position with smallest amount of movement, trains your body to achieve better body balance, improving your ability to stay solid under the barbell when you’re squatting, etc and helps you to string more repetitions of your gymnastics movements together too.
Try this simple yet afective Plank routine
A1. 30 – 45second Forearm Plank *Rest 30seconds
A2. 10 Side Plank Rotations/ea way *Rest 30seconds
A3. 30 – 45second Reverse Plank Bridge *Rest 90seconds
*Repeat 3 – 4x
*Isometric planks serve as a great way to warm up the CNS, switch on the core muscle and turn the core body temp up. These 3 plank variations hit the anterior core, lateral core, and the posterior chain well. They also provide 3 different positions as well as rotational movement for the shoulders and thus make for a great warm up protocol.
Few people can plank right first time and you know what? That’s ok.
Want to learn how to plank and improve your physique then Plus HFP has a trial class ready and waiting for you. Book TODAY, and let’s make you the best possible version of yourself you can be!
. Marcus Filly – Awaken Training Series.