5 Ways to Update Your Plank

This morning I was back on CH Morning Live, this time sharing ways viewers can shake up their plank. To watch this mornings segment click here.

Whether on your toes, knees, hands, or elbows the plank is a great move to strength your erector spinae, rectus abdominis (abs), and transverse abdominus, as well as stabilize through your  trapezius (traps), rhomboids, rotator cuff, the anterior, medial, and posterior deltoid muscles (delts), pectorals (pecs), serratus anterior, gluteus maximus (glutes), quadriceps (quads), and gastrocnemius.

Here is a short summary of some of those moves starting with the traditional plank.


Plank (regular and modified). Assume a push up position with hands or elbows under the shoulders. The body should form a straight line from the top of the head towards the heels or knees if kneeling.


1. Mountain Climber. From a plank position on your toes, increase your heart rate by jogging knees towards your chest. To decrease the challenge march your knees towards the chest.


2. Plank Jacks. From a plank position on your toes, jump both feet wide and then return both feet narrow together. To decrease the challenge alternate a toe tap away from the center line of the body one foot at a time.


3. Alternating Shoulder Tap. On the knees or toes, maintain a balance and stable hip position while touching the opposite hand to shoulder. To decrease the challenge, increase the distance between the knees widening your base of support.


4. Side Plank. With a focus on the obliques place one arm on the floor balancing on your elbow or hand. Place your same knee on the ground (left hand, left knee) or come into a full variation of the side plank by stacking both of your feet. Keep your hips raised and spine long.


5. Side Plank Hip Lifts. From a side plank position lift and lower the hips, increasing and decreasing the distance between the hip and the floor.


To watch these moves in action, view this mornings segment here.

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