A Look At The Advanced Method Of Training The Plank Exercise
It's time for another core workout article. In a previous article I wrote about the bicycle ab crunch and included a amazing way to perform it. In this article I describe how you can go about performing one of my favorite core workouts called `the plank`. So with out going through it all over again I'll just list the muscles for you. Many specialist agree that the main muscles used in the core are your rectus abdominis Transe verse adominis, Obliques, QL, Glutes, Erector Spinae, Multifidus, and even the diaphragm according to some specialists.
Caution! Plank can increase blood pressure and it is always advisable to see your doctor before engaging in a new activity.
Simple Plank before Advance Plank
There are tons of articles out there in the web that already explain has to do a standard plank. So I'm not going to include steps on how to perform them. I instead added a video just that explains how to perform front plank perfectly. Make sure your comfortable with this simple classic version before moving on to my super amazing version of doing the plank that is included down at the bottom of this article..
My Advance Plank Workout
This is a more advance version of the Plank exercise and one that I do personally and use to get my clients in shape. This method gets you to hold the plank for two minutes in total. With this you move from front to side, then back to front and finally to the final side. This gets multiple muscles worked through isometric contraction then we end it with side twists. Of course you should be able to perform the normal plank well before moving on to a harder version.
- Start on your hands and toes with the front plank for 30 seconds
- Next move to side plank right away and hold it for 30 seconds. Be sure to keep your 1 arm up in the air as you perform your side planks.
- After the 30 seconds, move back to the original front plank.
- Now move to the final side for the last 30 Seconds of plank.
- Once the final 30 seconds is done. Perform 10 reps of knees to elbows which is 5 per side. Then repeat with the other side.
Remember you can always make the plank easier by going on your knees. To make it harder, try going on your hands instead of your forearms, or lifting one leg up in the air.
Tips for a better Plank
At first sight the plank seems very simple to perform and one exercise that many people believe they are doing properly. However many people could improve thier plank with some simple tips to workout smarter not harder.
- Make sure you have a nice neutral spine while in a plank and your lower back is not dipping towards the floor.
- Have a professional or trainer look to see if your hips are aligned right. Many people will drop one hip more then the other.
- No "chicken necking". This is when your body is straight but you extend your head out and down which causes a big bend in your neck.
- I know i mentioned spine alignment in number 1, but I really want to make sure your not performing downward down instead of performing a plank.
- Pain in wrist can cause a lot of people not want to do the plank because of the added pressure while on your wrists. This can be helped by folding the mat over or placing a towel down to add more comfort.
- Shoes slipping while in high plank. This I find happens because people are weak and using leverage in the feet pushing against the floor to hold themselves up. Buy better shoes or just get better at holding the plank.
The key is to work within your limits and always seek professional advice if you are in need of help.
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