Planks are an amazing activity to add to your workout routine. But, let’s be honest, planks can often times be boring. Looking for motivation to sneak more planks into your daily regimen? Here are the 7 amazing benefits of planking! We promise, with these benefits, you won’t be disappointed.
First and foremost, remember to practice proper planking form.
To perform a simply front plank, lay face down on the floor with your legs fully extended and together, with your elbows placed on the floor directly under your shoulders. Simply lift your torso and thighs off the floor, so that all of the body weight is on your elbows and toes. This should create a perfectly straight line throughout your torso and thighs. Now hold it for 10 to 60 seconds!
Builds Upper Body, Lower Body and Core Strength
The plank is a full body workout! Planking helps strengthen your midsection (inner and outer core), stimulates upper-body stabilizers (pectoral and serratus muscles) and lower body endurance (quadriceps and sartorius). Put that all together and you’ve got yourself a one-stop shop workout move.
Planking helps to increase posterior muscle flexibility throughout your body. This means that expands and stretches muscles around your shoulders and presses the front of your thighs inwards and lengthens your legs. The result: a more limber body that helps prevent injury and is key to a healthy workout regimen.
Safeguards Your Spine
Since planks challenge your body to maintain a static position against gravity, consistent planks improve the strength of your stance, and therefore, reduce neck and back pain!
Planks help to enhance your appearance by improving your posture. This is done by activating your core muscles which stabilizes and helps to align your spine and hips.
Builds Mental Strength and Wellbeing
Planking stretches out muscles that commonly stiffen up throughout the day and cause unnecessary stress. Plus, planking has been long recommended by yogis’ for its ability to calm the brain and suppress anxiety!
No Gym Necessary
With planks, you’re using only your own body weight as resistance. This means that you need absolutely zero equipment to perform a plank – front or side! At most, all you need is an exercise mat for a more comfortable surface area. This also means that you can easily incorporate it into your workout regimen, no matter where you are – from your home gym to your hotel floor on vacation.
So Much Variety
Planks can be easily modified to change up your workout routine and add more variety or to accommodate different abilities. For example, those who need to work up to doing the traditional front and side planks can easily start by doing the exercise from their knees, and build up from there.
Looking to increase the difficulty? No problem! You can do this by simply placing sandbags on your hips, have a workout buddy press down on your hips, or lift one foot of the ground. The possibilities are endless!