The Plank and Side Plank – Core Strengthener
Fitness tip by Jackie Scorzetti
Pregnancy calls for some creativity when it comes to abdominal exercise, as lying on our backs in traditional sit-up style is generally considered a no-no after the first trimester. Get the most bang for your buck by practicing the plank and side plank. These isometric (static) exercises, combined with mindful breathing, work to strengthen the muscles of the abdominals, back and shoulders. The side plank also brings the hips and glutes into play, making it one of the most multi-functional exercises out there.
How to Do It:
Plank - Start on your hands and knees. Position your wrists directly under your shoulders. Walk your feet out behind you until your legs are straight and heels are pressing back. Lower your bottom so that a straight line forms from your head to your heels. Contract your abdominals and push the floor away with your hands. Hold this position for up to 5 breaths.
Side Plank – Start in plank position. Shift your weight into your left side and turn your body, supporting your weight evenly between your left hand and outside of your left foot. Make sure your left wrist is directly under your left shoulder. Lift the hips towards the ceiling and reach the right arm to the ceiling. Hold for up to 5 breaths before switching to the other side.
*To modify plank and side plank, balance on your elbows instead of your wrists.
Always consult a qualified medical professional before beginning any exercise program or nutritional program. All exercises and other forms of physical activity can be dangerous, especially if performed without medical advice, proper supervision and/or pre-exercise evaluation. Any content or information provided by this Website is for informational and educational purposes only and any use or reliance thereof is solely at your own risk.