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Why I Broke Up With Planks

Posted Jun 2nd, 2014 in Fitness, Wellness

Why I Broke Up With Planks

Most people don’t know this about me, but I’m a total nerd. I love research. Every month feels like Christmas when my ACE Fitness Magazine comes in the mail, and I take my time reading, processing, and putting into action every last detail that I find helpful.

 I was over the moon excited when I saw this past month’s feature article was about core training.  I just had a baby. I’m currently running a 90-day Abs-challenge with my clients. Perfect.

I sat down with my cup of tea and I immediately opened to the feature article. A chart caught my attention. This chart compared abdominal exercises and well-known abdominal equipment. Never having been a big fan of the wheel or the roller, I knew what to expect. But then it hit me. It smacked me in the face so hard, I could cry. The front plank and side plank were the second lowest scoring moves for training the core. My world was crumbled.

The front plank and side plank were the second lowest scoring moves for training the core. My world was crumbled.

 I love planks. Planks are in every workout I do. Planks speak to me. Planks make me feel strong. It turns out, the good old fashioned sit up ranked higher, and if you do it on a stability ball, it ranked the highest! Life changing.

I began to read a bit more, and I realized my world was only moderately crumbled. Why did the good old fashioned sit up rank so high? Movement. I learned about this first hand after having a C-section and having to pull myself up out of bed to nurse my son or change a diaper. The most perfect pathway of nerves, muscles and organs had been disrupted and cut, and my body had to learn how to move again. Core training is about movement and stability. Something that is absolutely vital to our every day life.

Core training is about movement and stability.

I used to be able to hold a plank for longer than five minutes. Great. So what? The reality is that our busy life is full of movement and in order to train the core, you need to move. My classes are full of plank walks, plank hip dips, plank runs, plank jacks, and plank punches. I’ve recently added stability ball twists, crunches and push ups, along with weight work on the ball based on this current research.

So Mr. Plank, I guess I don't have to completely dump you, but I do have some pretty specific instructions and guidelines now about how you and I are going to make it work!

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