VIDEO: How To Triple The Effectiveness Of Your Side Planks
If improving core strength is among your fitness goals this year (and why wouldn't it be!?) then this video is for you! These tips will give your side plank training a huge boost, tripling the effectiveness of this important stabilising exercise.
THE KEY TAKEAWAY FOR PERFECT PLANKS: When you do any plank, don't just hold the position as long as you can. Instead, work on generating as much tension as possible.
Planks (and any static hold) are an opportunity to teach the body to create maximum stiffness on demand, which leads to more core stability. Whether you're lifting heavy weights, bracing to take an impact in a contact sport, or engaging your core to maintain a better running position, the ability to instantly fire up the correct muscles as hard as possible is a huge asset. And it's something we want to get better and better at over time.
Of course we also want good core endurance so we can hold good positions for extended periods of time and under fatigue.
Having said that, I'd still recommend that the vast majority (or perhaps even all) of your core training focusing on engaging the target muscles to the max.
In the side plank, you can either stay somewhat relaxed/lazy and still hold a decent looking plank.
Or, you can actively squeeze the glute of your bottom leg and pull the elbow down toward your foot to engage the lat and obliques on your bottom side.
This makes the plank much harder and you probably won't be able to hold it as long. But it also makes it more effective.
PERFECT PLANK TIP 1: Make sure you're in a comfortable position and feeling balanced.
PERFECT PLANK TIP 2: Think into your obliques and lat muscles and SQUEEZE! That is where you get so much extra benefit from this exercise.
PERFECT PLANK TIP 3: Try a hollow body hold on a 45 degree angle. This exercise will skyrocket your oblique game!