Perfecting Your Plank

Guest post by Megan from Running Toward the Prize

I used to avoid planks. They made me shake. They made me hurt. And I just didn’t like them.

Until just about every workout DVD and fitness class incorporated them into our workout. Obviously they had some mighty importance! (I mean, if Jillian Michaels says they are one of the best moves – then clearly they must work!)

So now, I do a plank just about every day. Have you seen #plankaday floating around Twitter??

But did you know there are many variations of the plank? Like a zillion. Literally. So here are some of my favorite plank variations!

The Basic Plank

For this move, you start on your forearms and toes, making a straight line from your shoulders to your toes. (No butts in the air!) If this is too difficult, start on your knees.


Basic Plank v.2

When you’re ready to work your way up, instead of resting on your forearms, move to your hands.

Medicine Ball Plank

Same idea, but balance your hands on a medicine ball.


Stability Ball (or Bosu Ball) Plank

Balance yourself on a stability ball or Bosu ball. You can use the ball on your hands or legs!

Side Plank

This will work your obliques. Stack your feet on top of each other (or one in front of the other). Start on your forearm and work up to your hand.

Cardio Planks

It’s true – you can add cardio to your planks! Start in the Basic Plank v.2 position (on your hands).

Plank Jacks

Have your feet do a ‘jumping jack’ while in the plank position!

Mountain Climbers

Bring your knee into your chest, quickly bringing it back then doing the same with the other knee.

Ski Moguls

With both feet together, “jump” to the left (keeping your hands planted), then back to the center, then to the right.

As you can see, there are many ways to incorporate planks into your workouts!

Read more from Running Toward the Prize.

What is your favorite plank? Can you commit to doing a plank a day? Share your thoughts in the comments section please!


  1. I do these in boot camp!!!! Though I’ll have to check my form against this to make sure I’m not cheating 😉 haha

    My favorite is planking using the TRX bands! I can hold it longer even though my entire core shakes!

    • Jenn,

      It can be hard to not cheat – but the benefits are better if you don’t!

      I love the TRX idea! What a fun new way to try out planks 🙂



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here