• Deanne Pandey

How to hold longer Planks

The plank is one of the simplest exercises that you can do – it’s simple in its appearance and the amount of steps involved in doing one. Being simple, though, does not mean that doing a plank is easy. It is an effective core exercise that helps you build stability and strength throughout your entire body. The plank is achievable in a number of different methods, but the main goal of the plank exercise will have you with your body perpendicular to the ground, stomach facing down, elevating your torso off the ground with either your elbows or hands. One of the main benefits of a plank is that it is a bodyweight exercise. Bodyweight exercises are great for your core, and since they rely on your own bodyweight, they’ll be consistently tailored to your own workout needs – as you gain weight, you’ll be working out with more weight. Since planks work your core, that means they work basically the whole body, from your pelvic girdle to your shoulder girdle as well as your legs. The plank is versatile, not just in the benefits it provides for your body, but in the number of different ways you can perform the exercise. Each different method provides better benefits for different areas of the body, and all can be substituted on different days of your exercise routine. There are many variations and progressions one can opt for while doing this exercise. Although the time taken for each plank is of great importance Read along to learn how to hold your planks for a longer duration.

First, Here’s how to do a simple forearm or low plank-

Start with your body facing down on the floor and your toes curled under. Place your elbows directly underneath of your shoulders. Make your palms face down and your fingertips are angled forwards. Lift your hips and legs up by pressing your elbows and toes into the ground. While you’re up in this position, your body should form a straight line from your heels to the top of your head.

And here are some ways that will help you hold longer planks-

1. Count down backwards in your head, really slowly

Anything to distract the mind and override the voices in your head that for some reason do not want you to plank. Other tricks are to recite the alphabet or say nursery rhymes over and over in your head.

2. Practice more!

The best way to hold your planks longer is to Plank more! Add 10 to 15 seconds to your time each day, pausing on a time for an extra day or two if you’re really struggling.

3. Make your planks dynamic

Push up on to your hands, right, then left into press-up position, then lower yourself back down on to the elbows. Then swap sides and go up first on left then right. Insert 10 on either side into your usual plank time. You’ll find that you can do the usual plank time plus those raises, because it gives certain muscles a brief rest – yet works them.

4. Turn the stopwatch over

There’s nothing more demoralising than watching those seconds tick by in the slowest possible way. Set an alarm so you will know when you’re done and occupy your mind with something else.

5. Include Side planks

Just when you think you can plank no more, turn on to your side and bust out a side plank. It’ll feel like such a sweet relief after your one or two minutes in a low plank that you won’t even notice the seconds go by. Turn over to do the other side, and before you know it, you’ll have planked for three to four minutes in total.

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