Best Plank Exercises for Beginners to Tone Abs & Stomach

Plank exercises are great for strengthening your body. Whether you do isometric, isotonic, plyometric or calisthenics yoga, each pose includes a plank in some form or the other. Including plank exercises in your workout regimen helps in providing you a slim and well sculptured body, that is strong and beautiful.

Effective Plank Exercises that you can do:

Forearm plank:

Forearm plank

This is also known as Dolphin pose in yoga. This variation is done on your forearms. This is good for your upper back and shoulder muscles.

  1. First of all, take the plank position. Keep your abs tight and your back straight. Your shoulders, back and your body should be in a line.
  2. Keep your hands underneath your shoulders.
  3. Now you have to bend your elbows and lower your body on your forearms, first left and then right.
  4. Adjust the line of your body and make sure that your abs remains tight and your elbows are beneath your shoulders.

Hip Dips Exercise:

Hip Dips Exercise

This exercise is good for toning your love handles and for getting rid of the muffin tops and slimming your waistline. It gives a workout for your obliques, abdominals and also your lats.

  1. Take the side elbow plank position and balance your body properly.
  2. Now you have to dip your lower hip towards the floor and lift it again.
  3. You can do this 10 times on each side.

Hip twists exercise:

Hip twists exercise

Hip twists are one of the most effective plank exercises for toning your waist area and for improving the core strength.

  1. Take the forearm plank position first and then twist your hips and touch each hip on the floor one by one.
  2. The movement will be – twist and touch the right hip and then twist and touch the left hip.

Plank up downs:

Plank up downs

It is a hard core strength move and is good for removing upper arm flab.

  1. Take the standard plank position and then bend your right elbow and put your forearm down. Now bend your left elbow and set your left forearm also on the floor. This way you are in the forearm plank.
  2. Straighten your left and then your right arm, and get back to the standard plank.
  3. This is plank to forearm plank t and then forearm plank to plank movement.

Plank exercise:

Plank exercise

This is the traditional form and the most basic form of plank.

  1. Get on your hands and knees in such a way that your arms are straight and the hands placed on the floor directly under your shoulders. Keep your arms straight.
  2. Now you have to push your body up by lifting your knees, so that the balls of your feet and your hands support your body.
  3. Your back should be straight.
  4. Make sure that you do not strain your neck. Use your abs to suck in your belly button.
  5. Remain in this position for 10 seconds.

Rolling plank exercise:

Rolling plank exercise

Rolling plank is good for your hips, core, waist and arms. You can do it on your arms as well as your forearms.

  1. Stand in forearm position and make sure that your posture is correct.
  2. Now you have to lift tour right arm and twist your body on the left side into a side elbow plank.
  3. Here you do not stack your feet on each other. Just turn and come back again to your forearm position. Now you can turn to the other side. This way, keep on turning from side to side without losing your balance. The movement is left to centre to right to centre.
  4. Do 20 rolls in this way.

Side elbow plank:

Side elbow plank

Side elbow plank is a variation of forearm plank. It puts more pressure on your shoulders, but this position is easier for you to balance.

  1. Take the forearm plank position and make sure that your form is correct.
  2. Now lift your right arm slowly and steadily, and turn in such way that your weight is on your left side and your right side is up towards the ceiling. In this position your front is facing sideways.
  3. Raise your right arm up towards the ceiling and keep your right foot over your left foot.
  4. Remain in this pose for 10 seconds and then do the same on the other side.

Star forearm plank:

Star forearm plank

It is more advanced than the side elbow plank. It improves your flexibility, strength and balance.

  1. Take the forearm plank position and then slowly turn to the right side to take the side elbow plank position.
  2. Balance your body well and then raise your left leg up towards the sky.
  3. Raise it up as much as you can and try to try to hold your big toe with your left arm.
  4. If you cannot do it, just raise it as much as you can.

Side plank exercise:

Side plank exercise

This is a variation of the traditional plank position. This is good for correcting the posture of the upper back and for reducing the upper back fat. It is very effective for toning the obliques.

  1. Take the traditional plank position with your hands under your shoulders and arms locked straight, and the abs tight. Keep your body in a line.
  2. Now you have to lift your right arm slowly and steadily and turn on your left arm and foot. Maintain your balance by using the strength in your arms and your core stabilizers.
  3. Lift your right arm straight towards the ceiling and keep your right foot on your left foot.
  4. Remain in this position for 15 breaths ad then you can do it on the other side as well.

Star side plank:

Star side plank

This is a variation of side plank. It is a very advanced move and needs a lot of balance.

  1. Start with plank position and then turn to side plank position on to your right side with your left side up.
  2. Now lift your left leg up towards the sky and try holding your big toe with your raised hand.
  3. If it is not possible, raise it as much you can. Hold for a few seconds and then do on the other side.

Image credits: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

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