Try this move for better core strength

Senior woman smiling while doing a planking exercise in modern gym

Adopting small changes over time can add up to better health in the long term. Focus on building your core strength by adding one simple exercise to your weekly exercise plan — the plank.

The plank position, which looks like the high part of a push-up, works your core muscles, which are the major muscles in the area that connects your upper and lower body. These include the abdominal muscles and those in the back, sides, hips, and buttocks. The core also encompasses the muscles in your pelvis, including those that help support your bladder, uterus, and other internal organs.

Test yourself

First, can you hold a plank? Try the plank with your arms extended or resting on your elbows. Be certain to keep your back straight and your head in a neutral position looking at the ground. If you can’t hold the position, modify the exercise by resting your weight on your knees instead of your feet (sometimes referred to as a modified push-up position). Whatever version you do, time yourself to see how long you can hold the position.

Then repeat the exercise a few times a week, or even daily. Try to gradually increase the number of planks you do or the amount of time you stay in a plank (or modified plank position) over time. Start with one plank a day and build from there and increase your plank hold time gradually.

“If you can hold it for three seconds, try it for four. If you can hold it for four, try to get to 10 seconds,” says Dr. Edward Phillips, assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Harvard Medical School.

The ultimate goal is to be able to hold your plank for a full minute. “There’s a saying that when you can hold a plank for a minute, your back pain will be gone,” says Dr. Phillips.

Planks may ease back pain because as your core muscles strengthen, they provide more support for your spine. Having a stronger core can also help you move more easily and make your movements more stable.

Core strength exercises: Planks

Plank tips and techniques

  • Keep your neck and spine neutral during the plank.
  • Keep your shoulders down and back.
  • Don’t bend at your hips.

Modified front plank on knees

  • Reps: 1–6
  • Sets: 1
  • Hold: 10–60 seconds
  • Rest: 30–90 seconds between reps

Starting position: Kneel on all fours with your hands and knees directly aligned under your shoulders and hips.

Movement: Tighten your abdominal muscles, and walk your hands forward. Lower your upper body onto your forearms and drop your hips so your body is in line from your head to your knees, like a plank. Clasp your hands and align your shoulders directly over your elbows. Hold. This is one rep. Aim to hold for a total of 60 seconds, doing as many reps as needed to reach that total. For example, if you can hold a plank for 15 seconds, you would do four reps.

Front plank

  • Reps: 1–6
  • Sets: 1
  • Hold: 10–60 seconds
  • Rest: 30–60 seconds between reps

Starting position: Kneel on all fours with your hands and knees directly aligned under your shoulders and hips.

Movement: Tighten your abdominal muscles and lower your upper body onto your forearms, clasping your hands together and aligning your shoulders directly over your elbows. Extend both legs with your feet flexed and toes touching the floor so that you balance your body in a line like a plank. Hold. This is one rep. Aim to hold for a total of 60 seconds, doing as many reps as needed to reach that total. For example, if you can hold a plank for 15 seconds, you would do four reps.

Bible verses for today’s meditation and inspiration: Matthew E. McLaren

But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one. 2 Thessalonians 3:3 NIV 

Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. 1 Chronicles 16:11 NIV 

I love you, Lord, my strength.  The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18:1-2 NIV 

But I will sing of your strength, in the morning I will sing of your love; for you are my fortress, my refuge in times of trouble. Psalm 59:16 NIV 

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. 1 Corinthians 16:13 NIV 

Ah, Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you. Jeremiah 32:17 NIV

The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights. Habakkuk 3:19 NIV 

For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 | NIV

Recommended contacts for prayer request and Bible study

www.agapetemplesda.com

www.adventistontario.org

https://www.hopechannel.com/au/learn/courses

breathoflife.tv/

https://3abn.org/all-streams/3abn.html

http://www.nadadventist.org/article/15/contact-us

https://www.adventist.org/en/utility/contact/

It Is Written

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Show Buttons
Hide Buttons