PLANKING: BEFORE IT WAS AN INTERNET PHENOMENON

If there is one thing I tell ALL of my patients, it is that a healthy, strong core is essential to a healthy spine.  My favorite exercise to increase core strength is the Plank.  The plank is a classic exercise and is a GREAT alternative to sit-up’s and crunches.   The Plank activates and trains the abdominal muscles to form a strong “band” around your spine.  Think of a strong core like wearing a weightlifting belt all the time.

weight-belt-lift
In my opinion, Planks are the fastest, safest way to strengthen your core, and to prevent  low back pain in the future.

To start; lay on your stomach on the ground or on a yoga mat.  Move onto your elbows so that your elbows are under your shoulders and they form a 90 degree angle to your forearms. Lift your hips off the ground.  Once you have assumed this position, suck your belly button into your spine (like you are trying to impress someone at the beach).  Be sure that your body is in a straight line, like a plank of wood.  Hold this position for  15 seconds, then relax your hips back to the ground.  Rest for 30 seconds and then return to the plank position for another 15 seconds.

The goal of this exercise should be to hold the plank position for 60 seconds.

good-plank
.  Your ears, shoulders, hips and knees should all be in a line, not an arch.

A failure of the exercise occurs when the back is arched up into the air, or if the hips are dropped back toward the ground.

bad-plank
Once you have mastered the plank, experiment by moving your elbows out to 120 degrees and/or by lifting one foot off the ground.

 

-Britton A. Taylor, DC

“To keep you at your best, for the rest of your life.”

Taylor Chiropractic Center

1195 FM 156 S Ste.170

Haslet, Texas 76052

(817) 408-5353

Written by