The plank is an excellent static nose to toes core exercise. Performing variations of static planks and bridges should be an integral part of the majority of exercise programs. However, the key word to focus upon is “static”. I don’t know about you, but I do not spend much of my day in a static plank or bridge position unless during my workouts. Consequently, these static exercises do not reflect the very active lifestyle that you and I lead. Therefore, we must integrate movement patterns which better simulate our daily round and the two exercises featured below do just that—move us through space and time! As always, prior to beginning any exercise program, please consult your physician.
Pike Plank w/disc – begin kneeling on the floor with two gliding discs under the balls of your feet. Position the body into a full plank position from kneeling, legs approximately hip distance apart, wrists under shoulders. Draw the hips toward the ceiling as if you were forming a pike or downward facing dog position, keeping the arms and legs extended, tailbone aiming for the ceiling. Then, with control glide back into a plank position slowly.
Burpee with Pushup and disc – begin kneeling on the floor with two gliding discs under the balls of the feet. Position the body into a full plank position from kneeling, legs approximately hip distance apart, wrists under shoulders. Tuck knees toward the chest by gliding with discs under feet, then press the legs back out and perform a pushup. From the pushup position, tuck the knees back toward the chest and then stand up erect, feet flat on discs. Repeat the series from the plank position. Think plank, tuck, plank, pushup, tuck, stand, repeat.
*Repeat 1-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions, two-three times/week on non-consecutive days.
**These are both advanced exercises. Master your planks statically first before attempting either version.