Winter is over, the temperatures are rising,summer is going to be here soon. That means 2things: shedding layers of winter clothes and becoming much more active. Did your Netflix addictionget the better of you for the last 4-6 months? It’s okay, you’ve still got time to get your bodyready.
Since we’re all short on time these days you’re going to want to focus on the best bang for yourbuck exercises, exercises that focus on using a multiple muscle groups and can help you reach bothaesthetic and performance goals which is why planks are a great choice.
Planks are a great total body exercise that is efficient, effective, can be done anywhere, andprogressed or regressed to fit any fitness level. Whether you’re looking to tighten up the midsectionand stand a bit straighter to look great at the beach or improve your athleticism for summer sports,planks are a perfect exercise.
Planks are More Than an “Ab” Exercise:
Most people think of planks as an ab exercise, and while it’s true they are a great exercise for theabs, it’s selling them short.
Most trainers and physical therapists consider the “core” to be the area from your shoulders toyour hips and every muscle in between. Doing planks works just about all of these musclessimultaneously. Muscles like the “6 pack abs” (rectus abdominus) deeper abs (transverseabdominus), obliques, spinal errectors, lats, rhomboids, traps, and glutes. Simply rising into a pushupplank will also incorporate the chest and triceps. Planks, when performed correctly, are all aboutcreating tension through the whole body, activating all of the muscles of the “core”.
Compare that to a crunch or situp, where the abs and hip flexors are the only muscles really exertingand it’s easy to see how planks are so much more than just an “ab” exercise.