The classic plank has been the subject of significant buzz both in the gym and in pop culture over the last few years and for good reason: with very little movement, the plank targets every layer of the abdominal fascia, strengthening the core and increasing the flexibility of posterior muscle groups. At the same time, it can be used to reduce pain, particularly in the lower back. The plank and its many variations, are important for establishing the core as a stabilizing force, one which shares the burden of the upper body’s weight with the lower back, and contributes to good posture. Let’s look at the form of this chiropractor-approved movement:
- Elbows directly under shoulders
- Wrists aligned with elbows
- Push your body upward and hold your chin close to your neck
- Pull your belly button in, contract your abdominals and squeeze your glutes and thigh muscles.
- Hold 20-30 seconds, no longer is necessary if the form is correct.
- Rest 1 minute, repeat 3-5 times per session.
As with all exercise, it is important to note that good form is essential: you won’t be reaping the benefits of the movement unless you are doing it properly, and you could actually be training your muscles in a way that will leave them exposed to injury moving forward. At Scorca Chiropractic Center, we can help you implement a stretching and strengthening plan to great effect.
Dr. Francis Scorca, D.C.