At the end of the month, we are starting a new challenge called Planks and Thanks, consisting of 12 days of core workouts and gratitude work. Part of the core challenge is a timed plank hold at the beginning of the 12 days and again at the end to see how much you have improved. To get you ready, here are three cues to think about while you are perfecting your plank!

Neutral head: Avoid tucking your chin or looking forward. Make sure your gaze is at the floor slightly in front of your hands. This will take stress off of your spine.

Elbows under shoulders:  Make sure your shoulders are stacked on top of your elbows to get the best back and shoulder engagement. Unclasp your hands and press your forearms and palms into the floor to provide a stable base of support. Your hands can also be in a fist if that’s more comfortable.

Level hips: As your core starts to fatigue, the tendency is for your hips to migrate towards the floor. Tuck your tailbone slightly to prevent hip sagging. This also engages the glutes and other supporting hip musculature which creates a nice straight line from head to heel.

Don’t forget that the plank is a full-body exercise! The main muscles targeted are your abdominals, but lots of supporting muscles are also working with your abs to support your body weight, like your glutes, quadriceps, trapezius, and pectoralis major. Since so many muscles are working in concert to support your body weight and they are all interconnected, thinking about “squeezing” your muscles will give you an extra lift.  Happy planking!

We’d love to have you join us in this challenge! Sign up here!

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