Think of the plank as a great core exercise to measure your fitness and total body strength. It’s not as sexy as other core exercises we could select, but I promise these progressions will leave you shaking like a leaf! This is a good thing!
As a surfer and stand up paddler I need stronger core muscles for long distance and to help me carve and turn on the waves. If your core muscles are strong you’ll have less fatigue, possibly reduced low back discomfort and your surfing and paddling will become more explosive.
If you can nail this one with grace and smooth execution with time to spare on the clock, EVERYTHING in your body will love you back and perform at higher levels. The key is to embrace it and test yourself in increments of 15 seconds.
Begin on the ground, then you can progress to unstable platforms as I have pictured here. Then you can totally rock it with two unstable platforms and then switch those as well. Second, you could then attempt to lift one leg behind you, squeeze that glute gently for stability and added fun, and hold that for 15 seconds, then 3o and so on.
The key to a good plank is to keep your neck neutral and relaxed, don’t let your hips sag and don’t clasp your hands together and lastly draw in your abs. Oh and don’t forget to breathe.
In time the shaking will get less and stop all together. As you can see that is your goal. Your fitness will improve, your core muscles with thank you and you’ll be able to really rip it up out there on the water!
Let me know how you did. I’d love to hear from you.
Aloha and see you on the water.
Suzie Trains Maui