Plank is one of the most effective and popular exercises for strengthening abdominal muscles. However, not everyone is able to reproduce it in the correct way. Therefore, we suggest how to skillfully perform the “plank”.
The exercise commonly known as the “plank” gained popularity in the fitness world several years ago. One of its greatest propagators was trainer Ewa Chodakowska, who regularly included the “plank” in her instructional videos. Currently, plank is performed by anyone who wants to work on abdominal muscles and dreams of its flat appearance. The seemingly simple exercise engages many muscle groups, including the glutes, arms, and back.
Although the plank does not require additional movements, maintaining a stable position is definitely more difficult than it may seem at first glance. Normally, a few seconds of each workout is spent on the “plank”, but planck specialists are able to hold the challenging position for up to several minutes. The versatile effect of the exercise allows the development of many muscle parts and improve physical skills in any athlete.
Plank is an exercise that allows you to get a flat abdomen in a short time. By adopting the correct body position, the muscles of the arms, back, abdomen, buttocks, and legs are engaged in the work. Each of these parts gets stronger with regular training and allows you to increase the load of the exercise. Working the muscles of the back improves the correct alignment of the spine, thereby regulating good posture for the entire body. This strengthens the entire core, which will slenderize the figure and reduce back pain.
The stable position of the “plank” puts less strain on the cervical vertebrae and spine than the classic abdominals, and therefore reduces the risk of injury. Plank is one of those exercises that can be easily incorporated into any training plan or find a few minutes every day to perform it correctly. The effects of regular exercise should appear in a short time.
The principles of the “plank” are simple, so the exercise can be performed by an athlete of any level. When performing a plank, all the muscles involved should be tense so that they are quickly stimulated to work. The hands should be placed flat on the floor. In the classic version, they should be straight to keep the body in an even line. The elbows should be at shoulder width, the neck should be an extension of the spine, while the head should be bowed. Resting your weight on your hands and feet, you should straighten your back and buttocks and try to keep them in a straight line for as long as possible. The feet should stick to the ground. They do not have to be joined together, because the wider the distance between the legs, the easier it will be to maintain body balance and the correct position. Breathing should be natural and even while performing the exercise.
In addition to the classic version of the planck on straight arms, you can try more complicated techniques as your skills and stamina develop. The simplest variation of the plank is its newer version. It differs from the classic position by basing the weight of the whole body not on straight arms, but on forearms and bent elbows. Low plank allows you to achieve a straight line from the feet to the top of the head.
One of the more popular variations of the exercise is also the side plank, or side plank. The support in this case is realized only on one side, usually on the elbow. The exercise strengthens the oblique abdominal muscles and helps to reduce “sides”.
Plank can also be performed by pulling both legs to the chest alternately or lifting alternating arms and legs (e.g. right leg and left hand – Superman position). From the “plank” it is easy to move on to performing push-ups, which can be another part of a workout that builds quality muscle tissue.
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