Everybody is planking. 90% get it wrong! Here are 6 ways to fix it.
The board is one of the most difficult isometric exercises to perform it correctly. Most of us add exercise to our workouts, whether we are running or weights. But what happens is that we don’t realize we’re doing it wrong. Running a board requires stamina, self-concentration, “working” abs, a strong torso and an overall good physical condition.
The board is considered one of the most effective body weight exercises to strengthen the core and abdomen. Doing it right will provide you with the benefits it promises: it will make you a better athlete, help prevent or reduce back pain and enhance fat burning.
Make the board the right way
1 Tighten your buttocks as much as you can
In most exercises the buttocks and the plank are no exception. Tightening of the buttocks carries most of the load on the abdominal muscles. And the abdominal muscles are the ones you want to train for, right? In addition, tightening the buttocks reduces pressure on the lumbar spine and therefore reduces pain in the waist. Also, think about your belly button being pulled towards your spine. This way, you will tighten the back muscles more and have a straight chest and spine secure.
2 Do not hold the board for too long
Seriously. Here it is true that quality takes precedence over quantity. It doesn’t matter how much more time you can afford on the board if you suffer. It is important to feel that the muscles are “working” and not overworked.
According to Professor and Sports Scientist Stuart McGill of the University of Waterloo in Canada, whose research focuses on the prevention and treatment of back pain, says keeping your body on the board for as long as you can withstand is not the best you can do it yourself. And this is because this type of exercise is of no use if you hold it for longer.
Holding the board for 10 seconds at high intensity, followed by a brief rest before the next iteration, creates a much stronger core with fewer injuries.
3 Find the right place for you
As each body is different, the alignment of the spine is different. Due to anatomical differences in body size and length of limbs, the ideal position may be slightly different for each individual. This is important because the board has to cause abdominal muscles, without damaging your elbows or shoulders. Experiment by moving your elbows and legs a few inches inward, outward, backward or forward until you find the right place for you.
4 Look over the… fence
You focus on your thighs, buttocks and back to be in the right position but you forget that the head is also part of the body and its balance. To correct it, think of your head as an extension of your back. Look constantly at the ground about 30 cm above your hands. There’s also a trick that will help you: when you’re planking pretend to look over a fence by pushing your elbows down to lift your head and neck a little higher. This will align your hips and shoulders and make your abdomen more bent.
5 Tighten your armpits
In order for your board to work, any muscle needed to stabilize your spine is important. When you plank and you don’t feel the burn, tighten your armpits as if you had a bunch of euros underneath and hold them without anyone being able to take them from you!
6 Do not hold your breath
It is very normal to hold your breath when doing such an exercise. But when you forget to breathe, you deprive oxygen of your body, which can have a very bad effect on it.