You guessed it – the plank. And if you’ve ever had an active exercise session at our North York physiotherapy clinic, you know that your time isn’t up until you’ve done a front plank. At Yonge Street Physiotherapy + Wellness, we believe that this is one of the most important exercises you can do to strengthen your core and other parts of your body too.
The Front Plank
An isometric core strengthening exercise, the front plank is a position in which you support your full body weight in a type of push up configuration on your forearms, elbows and toes (or knees if you choose to do the modified version). This position is held for an extended period of time.
How it Works
This killer exercise works multiple muscles in your body simultaneously including your abdominals, shoulders, back and legs. While you hold your front plank, there are primary and secondary muscle groups at work:
Primary transverse abdominus (“inner girdle” ab muscle), rectus abdominus (“six pack”) and erector spinae (back)
Secondary rotator cuff; the anterior, medial and posterior deltoid muscles (shoulder); pectorals (chest); gluteus maximus (butt); gastrocnemius (calf); quadriceps (front of thigh); serratus anterior (at your side, over your ribs); trapezius and rhomboids (your upper/mid-back)
Guinness World Record
Here at our physiotherapy in North York, we will usually ask you to hold your front plank for 60 seconds. Consider this, on April 20, 2013, George Hood in Newport, Kentucky certainly put this time to shame as he set the world record for the longest front plank at 3 hours, 7 minutes and 15 seconds!