Core stability exercise: the plank
Nolan Lee, DC, MSAC, CES, E-RYT, is a big proponent of core stability exercises like the plank and its many variations. One plank favourite is to hold high plank (arms extended versus on forearms) and alternate a weight between each hand. The weight should sit next to one hand and be pulled across the body with the opposite hand. Repeat this exercise for one minute.
“Alignment of the spine should be neutral to maintain ideal core activation,” Lee says. “A good point of focus is the pelvis. If you can keep the pelvis neutral, not tilting it forward or backward, the low back should remain neutral. Plank can be a good way to work on a neutral, stable spine.”
Jess Fritsche, an ACSM certified Health and Wellness specialist and NCCPT Personal Trainer, reminds us to breathe. “Exhale while you lift the weight and inhale while you return to start position or relax,” she says.