4 Plank Moves To Get A Six Pack
If you’ve been working hard on developing a stronger core, one move that you’ll want to be sure you add into the mix is the plank exercise.
The plank move is an isometric exercise, meaning that rather than moving through a dynamic movement pattern as you complete each and every rep, you’ll simply hold a position for as long as possible.
This adds a whole new stress type to your muscle tissues, enhancing the overall strength gains you’ll see.
Furthermore, the plank itself is a great move for not only working the abdominal core, but also working all the muscles running up and down the spinal column as well, along with the muscles in the shoulders and hip flexors.
This said, if you find that the regular plank is getting just a little too easy, you might be looking for ways to increase the challenge.
The great thing about the plank is that there are many advanced versions you can try.
Let’s walk you through four advanced versions right now – each of which you can easily do at your next workout session.
The One Leg Plank
The first plank variation is a basic one leg plank. Just as the name suggests, you’ll perform this one by getting into a standard plank pose and then once you’re balanced, lift one leg directly up into the air behind you.
Hold that position for 10-20 seconds and then lower the leg again.
Once that leg is on the ground, lift up the other leg and repeat.
One great thing about this variation is that you’ll work the oblique muscles to a larger degree as they help stabilise the body as you shift onto the single leg.
The Spider Man Plank
Next up you have the spider man plank. This is another one that’s perfect for hitting the oblique muscles and just strengthening your core overall.
To perform this one, you’ll again get into the standard plank pose and then bring one knee up and tuck it into the shoulder as high as you can go.
The whole time, the body should be sustaining the plank pose as best as possible.
Once completed, lower the leg back down again and then next time, lift the other leg up to the shoulder and repeat. Continue alternating legs until all reps are finished.
The Exercise Ball Plank
The exercise ball plank is the next variety and is really great for those who want a bigger challenge.
You can either do this with the legs up on the exercise ball or with the hands up on the ball instead, which is the harder version of the two.
If you place your hands up on the ball, prepare to really feel those core muscles contracting maximally as you try and steady yourself over the ball.
If you can’t hold this one for very long, don’t beat yourself up. Keep working at it and soon you’ll see what tremendous strength gains it has to offer.
The Pike To Plank
Finally, the last variation to consider is the pike to plank exercise.
For this one, you’ll place the feet up on an exercise ball, supporting your body with your hands directly on the ground, under the shoulders.
From here, move up into the pike position, bringing the ball into the chest as far as you can go.
Pause here and then lower back down so that you have a flat back once again.
Hold this plank pose now for 10-15 seconds and then move back into the plank. Keep alternating until all reps are completed.
So next time you’re doing a core workout and are looking for a challenge, give one of these plank variations a try. They’ll all improve core muscle strength as well as endurance.