Plank is an exercise involving holding a push-up position for the maximum possible time. This isometric exercise can strengthen your abdominal portion, back, and shoulders.
People aspiring for six-pack abs can try this exercise. Planks target your abdomen, plus your entire body aiming towards lesser back injuries and great endurance.
Did you know that the world record for the longest elbow plank was 9 hours 30 minutes 1 second?
Performing planks can involve many forms, and also you can use the equipment for planks. However, it is not necessary to use equipment such as plank which is a calisthenic exercise.
You may or may not need a personal trainer for or doing planks, but you can check various videos on planks and how to do it.
You will now be aware of the best planks for abs exercises to make your core strong and build six-pack abs through this article.
13 Best Planks for Abs Exercises
Many other exercises give almost the same benefits as planks. But performing planks can be easier comparatively. Let us look at the 13 best plank exercises with their benefits.
1. Basic Plank
This is the most common and simple form of a plank. Follow the steps below:
- Lie on your mat and place your forearms just below your shoulders. Your hands should be extended, and your body should be elongated. Tighten your core, and be sure to contract your glutes, triceps, and abs to prevent your spine from contacting the mat.
- Pull your toes down and raise your knees so that your body is in a straight line.
- Try to hold the position for 20 to 30 seconds and gradually increase it to 1 minute or more.
After you are done mastering the basic plank position, move on to the different variations. Follow the steps mentioned below.
2. Forearm to Full Plank
- Begin in the forearm plank position.
- Move and extend your left hand to join the full table. Try this slowly first to master the transition. Do it with your right hand on the second pass.
- Increase the pace according to your comfort level.
- Try repeating 1 set for 30 seconds and doing 3 sets. Build until you can run the table for 1 minute or more as long as you safely hold the correct shape.
3. Side Plank
- Lie on one side. Make sure your elbow is just below your shoulder, and your arm is flat.
- Keep your knees on the floor, stack your legs, and lift your hips.
- Try putting your hand on your hip or lifting it directly toward the ceiling.
- Squeeze your glutes while holding for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- When you are comfortable with this pose, try lifting your stacked feet instead of your knees. Then you can increase the level of difficulty and develop more stability with variations such as the arm’s reach or the raising and lowering of the hips.
Working on this will target your internal and external obliques.
4. Reverse Tabletop Position Plank
- Sit upright on the floor with your legs stretched out in front of you. Place your hands behind you, either on the floor or on a foam roller.
- Contract your glutes, torso, and arms to lift your hips into a straight line from heels to shoulders.
- Warnings about sagging or lifting your hips too high. Make sure your shoulders are down, away from your ears.
This exercise can benefit your abdominal wall.
5. Walking Plank
- Begin your full plank with your hands just below your shoulders.
- Engage your glutes and abs to avoid injury for maximum benefit.
- Begin the lateral movement by moving your left arm and foot to the left at the same time.
- Raise your right hand and foot to be in the centre and return to the plank position.
6. Spiderman Plank
- Step one is your standard plank position.
- Pull the knee to the outside of the elbow, then slide it back to return to the plank position. Make sure your knee is open, so the inside of your thigh floats off the floor as you move your leg.
- Exhale as the knee bends forward and inhale as you push back.
- Start with 5 to 10 repetitions on each side. Set a goal for up to 20 reps on each side as you gain strength.
7. Plank with an Alternating Knee to Elbow
- Start in a standard plank.
- Raise one leg and pull the knee to the opposite shoulder.
- Push the knee back to the starting position on the plank. You must make sure that both your abs and glutes are tight throughout the exercise.
- Do the same and switch sides to balance your weight training.
8. Plank with a Row
- Hold 2 dumbbells of your convenient weight.
- Get into a full plank and place your dumbbells in your hands.
- Complete a row with a single arm.
- Return the dumbbell to the starting position.
- Complete the next row with the opposite arm.
9. Plank jacks
- Start on a basic plank.
- Jump with both feet, more than hip-width apart.
- Return immediately to the original position on the plate.
10. Mountain climbers
- Step one is a full plank.
- Put your hands at your shoulder width and use your upper body and pelvis to carry yourself.
- Contract your abs and pull one knee toward your chest without lifting your hips.
- Extend your leg back to the starting position to finish one side.
- Take turns on the other knee to finish the rep.
11. Plank with Shoulder Taps
- Begin with a modified full plank at your knees.
- Keep your core tight and prevent your body from swinging when lifting one arm, bending the elbow, and crossing your hand over the opposite shoulder.
- Repeat alternately with the other side.
12. Stability Ball Jackknife
- Begin in a full plank position with your feet on the ball. Activate your abs to maintain stability and align your spine.
- Push to roll the ball forward with your feet while pulling your knees toward you. Be careful not to lower your hips or around your back.
- Extend your legs and roll the ball back to return to the starting position on the board.
13. Stability Ball Pike
- Start together with your ball in your back and are available right into a full plank position, feet pointing down at the ball.
- Keep your knees locked as you roll ahead at the ball and raise your hips.
- Slowly roll again as you decrease your hips, getting again into the unique plank position.
12 Benefits of Doing Plank Exercises Every Day
- Enhances body balance and posture
- Planks strengthen the core (i.e., spine, shoulder bones, pelvis, and joints)
- Works on body flexibility
- Reduces abdominal fat and tightens the belly
- Reduces backache
- Focuses on better metabolism
- It can be done at home with less space. So, no need to buy expensive equipment to exercise.
- Directs body energy to arms, legs, and spine
- Improves speed and running efficiency
- The plank is a blessing for a tremendous amount of muscle in your body, making it attractive for all types of exercise – strength, endurance, or anything. Planks can even be a benefit for those looking to do cardio.
- Planks can be performed by people of fairly energetic age, provided they are in good physical shape. Children can begin to plank, and if they continue to do so, they can continue to exercise well into old age.
- So effective in improving strength in a wide range of muscles of the human body.
Why do we need to strengthen our core Muscles?
Core muscles, as the name, are a very important part of our body that is often ignored in training.
Core training is vital for the body. Not only does it increase core strength, but it also shapes your body around your trunk and pelvis.
You can improve your balance and stability via core exercises helping in daily physical activities. Therefore having strong core muscles can provide you with an overall fitness regimen. In extra, you are avoiding the chance of injury.
A confident, good posture is another reason for a healthy life. Bad posture may look weak and less secure. Core exercises are very beneficial in providing a strong stance.
You can also define your abs through core exercises, and also these exercises help burn fat.
Weaker core muscles can give you a bad posture, back pain, and muscle injury.
You can enhance your flexibility through core exercises and can also run faster than before.
6 Precautions in a Plank Position
Check out the following precautions which one must keep in mind while doing planks:
- Engage your entire core muscles every time to avoid back injuries. Keeping the core tight is an important aspect of a well-done workout.
- Maintain your body in a straight line and place your elbows as told for a certain workout.
- For any core exercise, it is advised to breathe deeply. Do the same for plank workouts.
- Maintain your push-up position with elbows directly beneath, forearms parallel, body in a straight line, and hips lifted. Keep your knees straight to continue the proper form for your popping six-pack muscles and a stronger core.
- Whenever you feel like continuing the plank, position yourself without pressurizing much.
- Seek a piece of professional medical advice in case of discomfort.
Now that you know so many planks for abs exercises and the importance of a stronger core, your six-pack abs are not so far when these exercises are done correctly.
The plank has multiple benefits, and since this exercise targets the core muscles so extravagantly, the benefits can cover the entire body. Your muscles, skeletal system, and even your organs can be positively affected by regular plank.
While some precautions should be taken concerning planks for abs and their many variations, you are more likely to benefit from this exercise rather than be in jeopardy. I hope you can quickly see how good this exercise is for you.
1. Can I get abs from doing planks?
Ans. Both planks and crunches will strengthen your abs but crunches only target your ab muscles while planks target other muscles as well. So, you must perform crunches as well in order to get abs.
2. What is the maximum time to hold into plank position?
Ans. 2 minutes is the maximum to hold into the plank position.
3. Who performed the longest plank?
Ans. Josef Salek performed the longest plank which was recorded at 9 hours, 38 minutes and 47 seconds.
So, try out these planks for abs exercises as soon as possible.
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