the regular Plank is a simple exercise
and a very effective one for developing
core strength and stability (and
I'm not talking about the plank
you see on the Internet where people
just lie facedown on top something...I'm
referring to a REAL plank where
you support yourself on your forearms,
keeping your body stiff and straight).
regular Plank is an exercise I start
even complete beginners off with
because of the tremendous core-focused
benefits you can get from it.
version of the plank cranks the
difficulty up a LOT...it's definitely
not a beginner version. You should
be able to do at least 2 to 3 minutes
of a normal plank before attempting
going to be doing the plank with
one arm instead of two. The arm
you're bracing on will be set perpendicular
to your body, which is the reason
I call this one a "hammer"
plank (it mimics the hammer curl
and you'll be exerting force against
the ground with your fist, like
instead of setting the forearm in
line with body and tilting so you're
doing a side plank, you will instead
be keeping your shoulders parallel
with the ground, using your arm
position to brace the core.
a VERY tough position and targets
the obliques and deep muscles of
the core strongly (the transverse
abdominus, for example) by focusing
on anti-rotation tension.
that means is that you'll be exerting
force to PREVENT rotation of the
spine. This is a much safer way
to target "rotational"
msucles without actually rotating
doing this one, you have two options...legs
together or separated (I just did
the legs-together version in the
demo). Keeping your legs together
will increase that torsion through
the core. Setting the feet wide
will make the exercise easier as
part of the work that the abs should
be doing will be done with leg stabilization.
the position you will be in for
the One-Arm Hammer Plank.
how the arm is set and how my shoulders
are kept square to the ground. This
is the MOST important thing to note
for the exercise...because if your
body tilts up on it's side, it turns
it into a Side Plank, which is a
whole difference exercise. Don't
make it easy on yourself :).
order to maintain that shoulders-square
position, you must exert force with
your fist against the ground, which
carries through the arm and into
until your position starts to break
then set your other forearm down
and switch arms.
repeating this side-to-side sequence
until you're unable to hold yourself
up (with shoulders square to the
ground) on either side.
is a VERY challenging plank movement.
To give you an idea of how hard
it is, I can do a normal plank for
about 4 minutes...I was less than
a minute on this, even switching
will feel this one from the moment
you start it and it will develop
tremendous anti-rotational core
strength and stability, in addition
to tightening the entire midsection