Plank pose strengthens the abs, obliques and lower back and is a key pose for alleviating lower back pain and stabilising your posture on the bike.
- Strengthens the hands, wrists, arms, shoulders, chest, back, core, hips, glutes and legs.
- Stretches the arches of your feet, calves and hamstrings.
- Improves posture.
- Can help to alleviate lower back pain.
- From all fours, walk your hands forward, tuck your toes and come up into Plank.
- Spread your fingers wide and press your hands evenly into the mat. Check that your shoulders are directly over your wrists and your feet are hip-width apart.
- Try to create a straight line all the way from your heels up to the back of your head. Engage your core and press back through your heels to straighten your legs.
- Look down at the mat to complete the alignment.
- Hold the pose still for 5-10 breaths, or as long as you can without compromising your form.
MODIFICATION: Knee Down Plank
- You can always drop down to your knees when you want to take a break.
VARIATION: One-Legged Plank
- To increase the intensity of the pose, lift one leg off the mat at a time and hold still for 5-10 breaths. Don’t let your hips lift up.
VARIATION: Forearm Plank
- If you drop down onto your forearms, you’ll find the pose more challenging for your core and less so for the shoulders and triceps. This is a good variation if your wrists are sore.
VARIATION: Spider Planks
- This dynamic Plank variation takes the difficulty up a notch.
- Avoid this pose if you have a wrist or ankle injury.
MASTER THE POSE