Hello, everyone! I’m Katie, and I blog about all things health and fitness at Health for the Whole Self. My philosophy is that healthy living is about taking care of our entire selves: body, mind, and spirit. Iâ€™m so honored to be guest blogging here at NHerShoes!
While I know that a lot of people want defined abs for aesthetic reasons, the importance of having a strong core goes far beyond appearances. The core muscles are the powerhouse of the body. They help us maintain good posture, prevent back pain, provide balance and stability, and improve physical performance.
To get a really strong core, you need to go beyond the basic crunch. One great move that works all of your abdominal muscles at once is the PLANK.
To do a basic plank, you start by lying face down on a mat, resting on your forearms. Next you come onto your toes, as if you’re going to do a push-up. And then you just hold that position…for as long as you can. 🙂
Once you’ve mastered the basic plank, you might want to challenge yourself to try some variations. My favorites are the walking plank and plank twists. These moves also incorporate upper body strength, so you get more bang for your buck!
To do a walking plank, you begin in the basic plank position. Then you place your right hand directly under your right shoulder, pressing up until your arm is straight. Do the same on the left side. Then lower yourself back down to the start position, and repeat the move starting with the left hand. Your abs AND your shoulders will start to burn…in a good way! 😉
To do plank twists, begin in push-up position. Then twist your torso, bringing your right knee into your left armpit. Repeat on the other side. Your upper body will be working to hold you up, and you’ll also be working the sides of the abs, or the obliques.
Because I know it’s difficult to visualize these moves, I’ve made a short video demonstrating all of them: the basic plank, the walking plank, and plank twists. Check it out!
Katie thank you so much for the post! I love the plank pose, I am actually going to make my KB class do some plank moves tonight!!
Question: Do you have a move you would like to show here at NHS? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.