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Look at all the different types of planks done by NAC employees and members for #Planksgiving!
Full body isometric contraction – the “plank”
Planks are a practice used in many different forms of exercise including yoga and strength training. The best part about a plank is that it can be done anywhere at anytime because no equipment is necessary. There are so many benefits of planking and different variations to make it more challenging or to make modifications based on your fitness and strength level.
A plank done properly works not only your abs but your back, chest, shoulders, and neck. The isometric exercise really works your entire body thus improving lower back strength and building your shoulders. Strengthening these muscles helps to improve your posture, keeping your shoulder back and chest high.
Modify or intensify?
If you’re a planking beginner, try holding a forearm plank for shorter periods of time and work to increase the time- start with 15 seconds and see how that goes.
To increase the intensity of the exercise, you can widen your stance and use your hands to hold your body in plank position, opposed to your forearms and elbows. Make sure to breathe! Whether your experienced with planks of a beginner, concentrate on your breathing.
Here’s a challenge from Andrew, NAC personal trainer:
During commercial breaks when watching TV, get down in a plank position. Hold for as long as you can through the commercial break. The goal is to eventually build up your core strength to be able to plank for the entire commercial break. When you can do this.. have someone video and send it in to us!