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Exercising with body weight is in the fitness world more and more popular and mostly thanks to simplicity and practicality. Plank is one of the exercises with own body weight which will be never out of style and also is one of the most effective exercises which you can do. Why? Because it requires little time and offers achieving significant results in a relatively short time range.
Abdominal muscles play an important role in optimal body posture and offer support for our back. It is also necessary at the prevention of injuries. However, our abs need to be strong and regularly trained to be able to perform this function successfully. It means that exercising of plank every day is an excellent way to strengthening of our core and back support.
What will happen if you do plank every day?
Basic (classic) plank
• Begin in the basic plank position with wrists and toes on the floor
• Hold your waist straight, stable and the whole body in one line from ears to toes without bending
• Head should be relaxed and your looking should be heading on the floor
• For beginning, it is enough to keep in this position for 10 seconds
• Gradually, extend the time for 30, 45, and 60 seconds
One of the most effective ways how to do plank is to lift arm or leg. Keep the abdominal muscles engaged and don’t let the belly to decrease and hips to move up. To avoid pushing of hips and butt out, incline the pelvis facing the floor. Don’t forget to breath. Slowly and regularly breathe in and breathe out.
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1. You’ll strengthen abs
Plank is the ideal exercise for abdominal muscles because it engages the whole main group of core including transverse abdominal muscle, straight abdominal muscle, abdominal external oblique muscle of belly and butt. The importance of strengthening of every muscle group shouldn’t be underrated because each of these groups has any purpose. If you strength these muscle groups, you’ll find out that:
• Transverse abdominal muscles – increase the ability of lifting heavier weights.
• Straight abdominal muscles – increase sport performance especially when jumping. This group is responsible for the famous sixpack.
• Abdominal oblique muscles – increase the ability of stable bending and turning of waist.
• Butt muscles – support back and strong formed butt.
2. You’ll lower the risk of getting injured
Plank is a type of exercise that allows you to build muscle mass and at the same time, you can be sure that you don’t put too much pressure on the back and hips. According to “American Council of Exercise”, planking not only reduces back pain but also strengthens muscles and ensures strong support of the back, mostly at the top.
3. You’ll have accelerated metabolism
Planking is excellent choice of stimulating the whole body, if you would do it every day, you burn more calories than at any common exercises for abdominal muscles such as push ups. Muscles strengthened by this exercise on a daily basis ensures burning of higher energy amount even when sitting. This is important mostly when you have sitting job and spend most of the day sitting by the computer.
If you decided to do 10 minutes exercises on a daily basis before or after work, not only it will accelerate the metabolism but also will ensure that this speed remains high throughout the day. (Yes, also during sleep)
4. You’ll improve body posture
Plank exercising perfectly improves body posture. By the means of strengthening the core, you will be able to keep the right body posture at any circumstances because abdominal muscles have an impact on the condition of neck, shoulders, chest, arms and back.
5. You’ll improve the stability
Have you ever tried to be standing on one leg and you haven’t kept in this position for longer than a few seconds? It is because your abdominal muscles are not strong enough to provide needed stability. By improving the stability with the help of plank and plank variations, you’ll improve the efficiency in every kind of sport activity.
6. You’ll be more flexible than any before
Flexibility is the key benefit which regular plank brings. By this form of exercise, you expand and extend all back muscle groups – shoulders, shoulder blades and collar-bone – and at the same time, you tension hamstrings, leg loops and toes. If you add side plank to your routine, you can work on the abdominal oblique muscles which offer more benefits.
7. You’ll be witness of psychical benefits and you’ll clear your head
Plank exercising has special influence on our nerves and influences improvement of the mood. How? Well, there are extended the muscle groups which have influence on stress and body tension. Think of it: you are sitting on the chair for all day, your thigh muscles are retracted, legs are getting heavy and tension in your shoulders is growing. These are the causes of stress growth in muscles and nerves. The good news is that plank not only salves your brain but also helps at the anxiety treatment and depression symptoms – although only when planks are the part of your every day routine.
The most frequent mistakes when you do plank
These can be divided into two groups; the first one is about overestimate of your abilities, the second one is about routine mistakes in sphere of technique. Let’s begin with the first one.
The most frequent mistake is overestimate of your abilities. Instead of learning the technique of plank to be perfectly managed on the wrists and toes, they are moving it to the next level of plank master positions. With lifted leg or opposite arm, plank with bosu, exercise ball etc. The result of some of these attempts is often catastrophe for their health condition. That is why, before deciding to bring plank to higher level, you need to be sure that you are good in technique of classic plank.
This leads us to another most frequent mistake – not managing technique. This can be easy to recognize – overly reversed pelvis forward (butt push out), deactivated shoulder blades, cavernous shoulders, bent head, inactive stomach, funnel chest, push out shoulder blades, etc. If you are not sure if you do it right, don’t be afraid to ask the specialist. He will definitely explain how to do plank right. Invest in yourself, it will help you and your health.