Top 7 Benefits Of Plank For Your Body

The recent Coronavirus pandemic has us all locked inside our homes. While it is a sad truth that we cannot go for a run out or hit the gym for a cardio workout, this can be an opportunity to discover ways to make our bodies and mind more self-reliant.

 

Ancient Indian scriptures mention that our physical movements need to be coordinated to connect our body to the mind and soul so that with each step, our Being aligns with the Universe. In modern day routines, this can be understood as having a well-balanced body and mind.

 

An important exercise is the Plank pose- a simple, isometric exercise which engages major muscle groups of the body in a single pose. This one exercise can work wonders, literally, from head to toe and help build strength and stability in the body- 60 seconds at a time.

 

What is a Plank ?

 

Simply put, the plank is a 2- step position :

 

Getting into the Plank pose :

Lie on your stomach and gently lift your torso on your elbows and toes while keeping your back straight. Your body should be in a straight line from neck to heels. Do not exert force to move up or down but simply hold the pose by tightening your core muscles.

 

Now comes the hard part !.

 

(ii) Hold the Plank pose :

Once you are in plank, engage and hold as follows :

  • Squeeze your belly button (abdominal muscles) towards your spine while keeping your back straight.
  • Then squeeze your thigh muscles (quadriceps) and buttocks (gluteal muscles) as much as possible.
  • Pull back your shoulders from your ears, keep your neck straight and breathe.

 

Hold this position for 60 seconds. For beginners, start with a few seconds and gradually progress to 60 seconds. Switch from elbow to forearm plank in order to hold the pose for longer. You will definitely feel a burn in your muscles and some shaking or quivering in the body. That just means you are burning calories !

 

Why should I do the Plank pose ?

 

Exercise is not always fun. Even a 10 minute workout can seem daunting to many of us leading sedentary lifestyles requiring habits like sitting slumped in a chair for hours at end, even when we work from home. We always think about working towards a healthier routine with a regular exercise schedule but somehow, it never happens because of lack of time, resources, motivation or all of them clubbed together !

 

Moreover, exercising in a gym or running in a public park can be scary for us introverts ! We want a good body but we don't want to interact with other, sweaty people -  *shivers in horror*

 

You can literally Plonk in a Plank anywhere!  It can be the bedroom floor or out in the sun in our balcony or garden (AVOID BATHROOMS- Caution ! Wet, Slippery Floor ! ). A 60 second Plank done a couple of times a day can give you a great core exercise. Add some basic stretches to have body movement restored even when you don't move around a lot.

 

The Plank pose is a Bodyweight exercise, i.e. you only use your own weight to enhance your bio motor skills like endurance, speed, flexibility and balance. There is no need for equipment of any kind and people of all ages, who are capable, can get into a plank as part of their exercise. You can use the Plank like a starting point of a marathon and gradually incorporate more exercise in order to build your own, personalized exercise routine.

 

What are the benefits of a Plank Pose ?

 

A strong core is much more than six-pack abs. We use our core muscles unconsciously for several actions in a day ranging from bending and lifting weight, for balance and even to managing our breathing. A weakened core can cause serious injury if ignored. The plank position helps target the core muscles and give them a good burn to build muscle strength.

The core muscles groups engaged in a plank are the following :

-       Transverse abdominis :

These are abdominal wall muscles responsible for stabilising the lumbar spine and pelvis before movement of limbs (raising your arms, bending forwards etc. ). Building this muscle increases our strength to lift heavy weights.

-       Rectus abdominis :

This is the muscle which gives you your six pack ! Working this long strap muscle can help improve high jumps and kicks.

-       Oblique Muscles :

These muscles make side bending, waist twisting and turning possible.

-       Gluteal Muscles or Glutes :

This is the strongest muscle of the body and is responsible for the movement of hip and thigh. It is connected to the tailbone and maintains the shape of your back and buttocks.

 

 

Holding a plank position can fire up all these muscle groups simultaneously giving us the following benefits :

 

1.     A Healthy Posture

 

A bad posture is when we slouch and have slumped shoulders. This happens because of poor alignment and sitting for long durations.

 

A good posture is one where the weight of the body is distributed evenly. It reduces the stress on our spine and gives us a straight, well aligned body while walking, standing and sitting.

 

The plank position engages all muscles from your neck, shoulder and back up to your pelvis, thighs and legs. Gradually, this results in a strong posture giving you the confidence to walk tall and proper !

 

2.     Balance and Coordination

 

Our core muscles are responsible for helping us balance while riding a bike or standing on one leg. Even dancing requires engaging the core muscles to achieve the right balance in form. Planks hold the core muscles taut thus teaching your muscle to endure. This builds muscle stability and  increases body balance.

 

3.     Improves Body Alignment and Helps Avoid Illness

 

Many of us, even at a young age, experience back pain and lower back issues. This is due to bad posture and bad alignment of the body. Regular planks can help improve posture and rid you of back pain.

 

This is because planks help build strong abdominal muscles which reduce the strain on your back, shoulders and neck. Planking down after a long day of sitting on your computer can help relieve neck and shoulder knots too and help your body come into alignment. Planks and regular exercise can prevent degenerative muscle atrophy caused by osteoarthritis too.

 

4.     Build Core Strength

If you’ve read this far, you have realized that our core muscles do more than look pretty ! Plank and its variations like a side plank, reverse plank, resistance planks etc. can help build strength and endurance.

 

However, only doing planks can become monotonous and you may quit soon. Thus, your ‘planking’ needs to be regular in the build-up towards a routine consisting of multiple exercises like cardio, weight training etc.  in order to give your body a comprehensive workout instead of a core burn out !

 

5.     Improves Flexibility

 

Are headstands, handstands or forearm stands your dream ?

Start planking to reach your goal !

 

In Yoga, the plank position, called Kumbhakasana and the side plank or Vasisthasana are essential poses for flexibility and core strength. They help improve flexibility in hips and thighs when combined with other poses. Abdominal muscles are essential for performing a headstand or a handstand and planks lead the way !

 

6.     Improves Metabolism

 

When we sit and work for long hours or are not physically active in our life, our metabolism tends to slow down. Doing the plank position regularly improves circulation, thus improving body metabolism. The stronger your muscles grow, the more your food intake will increase. However, if you keep exercising regularly and eat a healthy diet, the combination will make your metabolic rate go up and you will burn more calories, which results in fat loss. Regular planking can improve your metabolism and you will burn calories, even in your sleep !

 

7.     Improves Overall Mental Health

Any and all exercises release endorphins which help elevate our mood. However, planks can be special mood lifters because it engages the stress corners of our body. Our shoulders, neck and back usually tense up and have knots because of strain and stress, both mental or physiological. Contracting these muscles literally squeezes the tension out from major muscles where the stress accumulates.

 

Constant stress can cause various mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. Thus, exercise is essential to remind our brain and body to release stress and rejuvenate.

 

 

Plank pose is a wholesome pose to charge up or relax the body, pre or post workout, respectively. It is a simple solution and can be a great start to health and wellness. Protect yourself from unfortunate events by buy health insurance policy.

Disclaimer : The information published on this website is for the public's reference only. Content of this information is to provide an overview of your Insurance needs and should not be relied upon for personal, medical, legal or financial decisions and you should consult an appropriate professional for specific advice for Travel/Health/Motor. Bharti AXA General Insurance Company Limited makes no representations about the suitability, reliability, timeliness, and accuracy of the information, travel, services, or any other items mentioned on this subject for any purpose whatsoever.

Car Insurance

Bharti AXA provides a comprehensive cover for your car,so you can drive hassle-free.

Two Wheeler Insurance

Ride worry-free, with Bharti AXA two wheeler insurance plan. 

Health Insurance

Safeguard the health of your loved ones with a wide range of Bharti AXA health insurance plans.

Travel Insurance

Secure your joyous family trips with Bharti AXA international travel insurance cover.

Bharti AXA Home Insurance

Bharti AXA Home Insurance

Bharti AXA SME Package Insurance

Bharti AXA SME Package Insurance

Bharti AXA Commercial Lines Insurance

Bharti AXA Commercial Lines Insurance

Bharti AXA Commercial Vehicles Insurance

Bharti AXA Commercial Vehicles Insurance

Bharti AXA Motor Third Party Insurance - Commercial

Bharti AXA Motor Third Party Insurance - Commercial

Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)

Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY)

Bharti AXA Car Insurance

Renew your Bharti AXA car insurance to enjoy your non-stop drive.

Bharti AXA Two Wheeler Insurance

Renew your Bharti AXA Two Wheeler Insurance to continue your worry-free rides.

Bharti AXA Health Insurance

Renew your Bharti AXA Health Insurance and continue to safeguard the health of your loved ones.

Register Claim

Track Claim

BLOGS

FAQS

About Bharti AXA

Branch Locator

Cashless Garages

Cashless Hospitals

Careers

Contact Us

Become A Partner

Become A Partner

Products

Car Insurance

Two-Wheeler Insurance

Travel Insurance

Health Insurance

Motor Third Party Liability

Commercial Vehicle

Commercial Lines Insurance

Bharti AXA SME Package

Home Insurance

Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana(PMFBY)

Arogya Sanjeevani

List of products

List of withdrawn Products

Car Insurance

Comprehensive Car Insurance

New Car Insurance Policy

IDV in Car insurance

No Claim Bonus in Car Insurance

Bumper to Bumper Car Insurance

Bike Insurance

Comprehensive Two Wheeler Insurance

IDV in Bike Insurance

No Claim Bonus in Bike Insurance

Bike Insurance Quote

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance Coverage

Benefits of Travel Insurance

Travel Health Insurance

Travel Insurance Quote

Health Insurance

Cashless Health Insurance

Knowledge Centre

Blog

Infographics

Videos

Travel Guide

Visa Guide

Road Trip

Insurance Glossary

Health & Fitness Guide

Food & Cuisine Guide

RTO Guide

Driving License Guide

Car Manufacturer

Two-Wheeler Manufacturer

Travel Destination

Bharti AXA & YOU

About Us

Careers

Contact Us

Cashless Garages

Cashless Hospitals

Branch Locator

Grievances

Investor Relation Information

Resources

Public Disclosure

Knowledge Centre

Download Center

Media Center

Consumer Education

Electronic Insurance Account

Update IRCTC Nominee

Unclaimed Amount

Sitemap

Notice Of General Meetings

Service Parameters

Suspended Agents

Whistleblower policy

Become A Partner

About Group

AXA Group

Bharti Enterprises

Bharti AXA Life Insurance

Download My Airtel App

Legal

Privacy Policy

Terms of Use

Fraud Risk Management Policy

Equal Opportunity Policy

Most Recent Blogs

Things

#TravelInsurance

Things that are Not Covered under Health Insurance

18th Jul,2020

Why

#TravelInsurance

Why Do Patients With Hypertension Need Health Insurance

26th Jun,2020

Top-Up

#TravelInsurance

Top-Up Health Insurance: Here’s Why Having A Back-Up Plan Is Essential

22nd Jun,2020

6

#TravelInsurance

6 Reason to Buy Rs. 1 Crore Health Insurance Cover?

06th Jun,2020