Are you spending all of your time on the floor counting sit ups and wondering why you don't have abs of steel yet? Your efforts are commendable, but can I make a quick suggestion that will get you better results?
Hold a plank instead!
Planking a great core exercise. They make you stronger, especially when you are in an upright position (like sitting up tall or standing which we do all the time right?) In terms of functional movement, it will help you stand up straight longer which is great for aging as well.
Planks don't just work your abs either, they work your entire CORE! That includes: Stabilizing muscles in shoulders and hips. Planks are also safer in terms of less strain on the neck, less chance of injuring joints. Crunches just work your abs. If you have a minute everyday to exercise you are going to get a more functional and full body core benefit from a plank than you would than by crunching. Unless you have excellent technique, crunches aren’t actually that effective.
How to do a proper plank. -Start with you wrist right underneath your shoulders
-Pull your shoulders down out of your ears. Squeeze your shoulder blades into your bum.
-Keep your chin neutral by pretending that you are holding a grapefruit between your chin and collar bone
-Imagine reaching out through the top of your head
Option One, From knees: bum lower than your shoulders and a straight line down your spine from your head to your bum.
Option Two, From toes: tuck your toes under and lift your body up into a straight line from the top of your head to your heels.
Ways you know you're doing it wrong:
If you feel it in your traps or if you feel it in your lower back. Make sure your hands are right under your shoulders and that your bum is in line with your shoulders.
IMPORTANT: If it hurts, don't do it. If you have specific concerns, please message me. I'm a stickler for form. Ask me for help. Send a DM to me @strongirlsinc on Instagram.
Try Planking Today: Aim for 30 seconds, work towards 60 seconds as long as you feel it in the right places.
Pro Tip: If you can hold it for longer than 60 seconds, try elevating your feet on some heavy ass books.
That’s all for today! Happy Planking!
Carolyn Personal Trainer