Everyone knows that planks can be a great way to strengthen your core, but after doing the same old plank fairly regularly you can agree that they become a little boring! I’m a huge fan of planks so I found some ways to spice them up a bit. Here are some modifications that can make your plank much more effective for improving overall core strength but, best of all, will also make your gym sessions a bit more interesting!
- Add an incline – By adding a step for your feet your shoulders will have to work harder to maintain stability. This means that now it isn’t just your core that’s getting a workout, your upper body is feeling the burn too!
- Alternating arm and leg raises – This is another way to turn your plank into an all over body workout! Once in position, stretch one of your arms out in front of you. At the same time extend the opposite leg out behind you, remembering not to go any higher than your hip level. Hold this position for 5 seconds before swapping to the other side.
- Plank up and down – This variation will add some burn to your chest, shoulders, back, and triceps (along with your core, of course). Begin in the fully-extended plank position (pushup position with your hands slightly in front of your head), and then lower one arm at a time into the traditional elbow-plank position. Pause for 1 second in the elbow-plank position, and then (again, one arm at a time) push your way back up into the fully extended plank position. Repeat this movement fairly quickly for 30-60 seconds.
- Add some resistance – Adding more weight also makes your planks harder! This can be done by wearing a backpack with a few light weights in it, or using a resistance band that you wrap around your back and under your hands.
Switching up your workouts is a great way to stay motivated and ensure the exercise you’re doing is actually challenging you! Planks are great, but if you’re finding that they don’t challenge you as much as they used to (that’s a great thing – it means you’ve gotten stronger!) then adding some variation will take them to new heights!