Your elbow should stay lined up under your shoulder to prevent any shoulder strain. Your obliques, which run down the sides of your torso, are just one part of your abdominal muscles. Another study , published in the Journal of Orthopedic and Sports Physical Therapy in 2010, showed that the external obliques are activated almost five times more than the erector spinae, a lower back muscle, during the side plank, especially when performed on an unstable surface. Alignment is vital; when holding, keep your body in one long line. The simple side leg raise exercise builds hip and glute muscles — with the emphasis on the gluteus medius. Then try LeBron James' abs workout! “For many people, shoulder and hip stability are weak links in the kinetic chain, and the side plank hip lift forces you to stabilize the scapula (shoulder blade) while also firing up the gluteus medius to control the hip movement.”. Side planks work other core and hip muscles more than back muscles. Side plank with hip lift: This move focuses solely on the side plank, adding a weighted hip raise to further challenge strength and stability. In the side plank hip lift specifically, they help support your upper body as your hips move up and down. If you are not quite able to perform a side plank on the elbow with good form, you can modify the exercise to strengthen many of the same muscles. The side plank, in addition to the regular plank variety, is one of the most effective strength-gaining exercises for your core and the rest of the upper body. Side plank leg raises is a gym work out exercise that targets abs and glutes & hip flexors and also involves abs. Tense every muscle in your body. When you are ready for a more challenging version of the side plank, try lifting one leg. Core Exercise: Side Plank. All rights reserved. “There are some common weak points in the human body that the side plank hip lift can address,” says Cody Braun, fitness specialist for Openfit. This move also strengthens the deep muscles of … These muscles include the gluteus maximus, the quadriceps on the front of your thighs and the hamstrings on the back of your thighs. The … It strengthens abdominal and back muscles, particularly the transversus abdominis, rectus abdominis, obliques and quadratus lumborum. Side planks primarily target your obliques but they also target a myriad of other muscles as well, not to mention that you will also improve shoulder and hip stability. This move engages your core muscles, with special emphasis on your obliques. Side plank hip lifts require hip stabilization, so the gluteus medius and minimus are heavily activated in this move. Perform these leg lifts lying down or standing. The side plank hip raise with knee drive is an intermediate core exercise. The side plank hip lift can be a difficult move to master, since it requires a lot of coordination and core strength. Strengthening Exercises for the Quadratus Lumborum, Upper Body Workout Routine With Weights for Cheerleaders, American Council on Exercise: Side Plank with Straight Leg, IDEA Health & Fitness Association: Core 360, American Council on Exercise: Side Plank with Bent Knee, IDEA Health & Fitness Association: Corrective Exercises -- Swayback Posture, American Council on Exercise: Side Plank (Modified), Easy Tummy Flattening Exercises That You Can Do Standing, Privacy Notice/Your California Privacy Rights. Plank leg raises also work out your glutes, hamstrings, quads, and shoulders. Planks have been a part of regular workout regimes for a very long time now. Put the palms of your hands flat on the floor with the fingers extended forward The only issue with the plank/leg raise exercise is that it can ‘max out’ pretty quickly when it comes to trying to add resistance. Twist your torso forward and slowly place your left arm under your body. Anytime you move your shoulder or upper arm bone, you’re using these muscles. Not only is it a killer core exercise, but planks help tone your shoulders, obliques, and legs from heel to hip. This is almost double the work that this muscle does during the exercise that is most commonly prescribed for hip muscle weakness, the side lying leg raise. About this exercise. Avoid gasping for air. Side Plank Crunch is a core body exercise that strengthens your core muscles, especially your obliques, while strengthening your upper back and shoulder as well. Incline push-up : If you need to work up to the full push-up, you may want to start by performing the move with your hands on an elevated surface. Instead, focus on pushing the hips up toward the ceiling to best engage your abdominal muscles, particularly the obliques. Obliques. If you are having trouble, perform a modified side plank, this is an easier variation. The gluteus minimus is situated just below that, and it also helps stabilize the pelvis. If this is a new move for you, it can be easy to lose focus when you’re pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. It has numerous benefits, including emphasizing your abdominal obliques, improving the spinal stability, … Working together, they control your scapula to aid in the health of your shoulder joint as you throw, pull, push, and more. The internal obliques are situated right below them. Side Plank Leg Lift Exercise Information. Want to build core strength and improve your yoga postures? Lie on your side with your bottom elbow on the ground underneath your … This is a group of muscles that surround your scapula and control its movements, as well as prevent unwanted motion. Here’s how all these muscles work together in your body. While in a side plank, raise your top leg up and swing back and forth. What Muscles Do Side Plank Hip Lifts Work? ). One of the great things about these tried and true moves is that they easily lend themselves to different variations, allowing you to make them easier or harder based on your fitness level. Start in a side plank position, with your right shoulder over your elbow, your body in a straight line and reach your left hand toward the ceiling. Here’s how to do the side plank hip lift properly, and tips on how you can effectively add it into your workout routine. The side plank is one of the best ways to work your hip abductor muscles. If you can hold the position with excellent form for at least 10 seconds, increase the weight. This variation is called a plyometric side plank. Keep your shoulder pressed down away from your ear – it shouldn’t sag into your neck. The side plank primarily works muscles in your core. When performing this exercise, pay attention to good form. Muscles Worked: Abs Difficulty: Easy Equipment needed: None Lie on your left side with your knees straight and prop your upper body up to take its weight on your forearm. Perform for 3 sets of 20 seconds. Repeat for reps, then switch sides, performing equal reps on each. An intermediate-level Pilates exercise, the side plank on the elbow requires you to support your body weight on your forearm and the side of one foot. And side plank hip lifts create even more of a challenge: it creates tension and stability, now let’s see you maintain that while you move. The side plank is one of the easiest ways to work the two layers of muscle along the sides of your core, known as your obliques. 2. How to Program Plank Varieties: The plank can be performed any time during your workout. The gluteus medius is located on the upper, outer section of your rear. Side Plank With Weight The other simple thing you can do is add a dumbbell to increase the difficulty of the side plank. In fact, your hips play a big role in making your planks stronger. The side plank is going to be easier with the knees bent and the more vertical your body is. Side Plank With Leg Lift. Both of these versions require extra effort in the abductors and adductors. They also work your total body, especially this plank variation: the side plank crunch. (This group of muscles also include your the rectus abdominis that runs down the center of your stomach and the transverse abdominis that wraps around your torso underneath.). So it’s best to have a few cues handy and keep them simple. Do it before a lift to heat up and activate your shoulder, glute, and core muscles. © 2019 www.azcentral.com. The side plank is only one of many plank variations. Reverse the move, returning to side plank position. If you're looking to tone your midsection, include side planks in your workout. Start in a side plank position with your elbow directly underneath your shoulder and your feet stacked on top each other. Your hips should stay in a neutral straight line – if your butt starts sticking out behind you, straighten out by squeezing your glutes and core. It also targets the gluteus medius and gluteus minimus in the hips, as well as the adductor muscles located in the inner thigh. Side planks have the added element of maintaining stability in an unstable position. The gluteus maximus is the largest of the three, and is primarily responsible for hip extension and your booty’s round shape. It should be a very hard 20 seconds. You can lift the top leg until it is parallel to the floor, or you can bend the knee of the bottom leg as you take the foot off the floor. Control your breathing with steady breaths in and out as you move up and down. The side plank also works several other muscles that provide additional stability as you hold the position. Challenge your oblique muscles with several variations as strength improves. This is almost double the work that this muscle does during the exercise that is most commonly prescribed for hip muscle weakness, the side lying leg raise. Simply balance a dumbbell on your side by straddling it on top of your oblique muscle. It also fires up your scapula stabilizers and glutes. That’s why you’ll see classic moves like squats, push-ups, and planks in workouts today and 20 years ago. It helps stabilize the pelvis and move your leg outward. Instead of extending your legs, bend your knees so your forearm and the side of one knee support your body weight. Every plank variation can help you strengthen your core, which creates better stability and decreases your chance of injury. Your obliques, which run down the sides of your torso, are just one part of your abdominal muscles. Lie on your left side propped up on your left elbow and forearm, shoulders stacked over your elbow, legs stacked on top of each other, and hold a dumbbell in place on top of your right hip. Step 2 Pull your top leg up towards your chest. This is the starting position. Doing a quick 10-minute ab workout a few times a week can really help strengthen your core. Do not perform the exercise with a rounded back. The side plank leg lift or side plank lift is a slightly more difficult variation than the traditional version, as it demands a higher level of coordination, stability, and balance. The side plank is one of the best ways to work your hip abductor muscles. Raise your hips so that your body forms a straight line from head to heels. The external obliques are visible (if you’re lean enough for them to show) and run diagonally from the sides of your rib cage to the tops of your hip bones. Refer to the illustration and instructions above for how to perform this exercise correctly. The best exercises never go out of style. Keep your shoulders, hips, knees and feet in one straight diagonal line, and make sure your neck and head continue the line of your spine. Gaddour demonstrates how to do the side plank … This version does not work the hamstrings, and the adductors are worked less than they would be with the straight-leg version. It strengthens abdominal and back muscles, particularly the transversus abdominis, rectus abdominis, obliques and quadratus lumborum. If you're looking to tone your midsection, include side planks in your workout. Challenge your oblique muscles with several variations as strength improves. This is a great move that challenges your balance and requires core stabilization. The hip abductor muscles work at about 74 percent of their maximum during the plank. (An easy way to create tension in your core is to exhale sharply as if you are trying to blow out way too many candles on a cake. The right external obliques work with the left internal obliques, and vice versa. There are three muscles that are collectively known as the glutes: the gluteus maximus, the gluteus medius, and the gluteus minimus. This move engages your core muscles, with special emphasis on your obliques. In contrast, side plank (vasisthasana) helps us to access muscles that tend to be neglected—not just in yoga but also in daily life. With side plank progressions, it is going to be harder on the hip and core muscles the more horizontal you are, and with the knees straight. The side plank primarily works muscles in your core. Side plank with lateral raise Hold your body in a straight line from head to feet with your elbow directly beneath your shoulder. “A solid plank works the quads (front of the thighs), glutes, and calf muscles in your lower half,” Blades says. Just take a look at the plank: you can do regular forearm planks, side planks, and more dynamically, side plank hip lifts. Considerable core strength is needed to keep your hips from sinking toward the floor. Maintain stability by squeezing your core muscles and glutes throughout the entire movement. This classic exercise builds upper body and pressing strength while putting … Here’s how all these muscles work together in your body. When doing the general plank leg lift, do not rotate the torso to your side while lifting your leg. Find related exercises and variations along with expert tips Adding leg lifts to your planks can boost the intensity and activate more of your abdominal muscles. Plank Leg Raise Tips. However, here are some of the best benefits of performing planks and making it a part of your daily routine: Planks are Beneficial in Building a Strong Core Primary muscles: Obliques Secondary muscles: Core, shoulders Equipment: No equipment SIDE PLANK ROTATION INSTRUCTIONS. Try not to let your back round too much or your chest collapse. Video: Forearm Plank and Leg Lifts Don’t get frustrated if you lose your balance when you first try it out; keep practicing it with proper form, and gradually you’ll get better. In this version, keep your shoulders, hips and knees in one continuous line, and let your feet go behind your body. Think you got what it takes to train like the pros? Kat Black is a professional writer currently completing her doctorate in musicology/ She has won several prestigious awards for her research, and has had extensive training in classical music and dance. All together, they help to stabilize your spine and rotate your torso. This is a very challenging exercise that targets the obliques as well as the gluteus medius and is suitable for intermediate to advanced fitness levels. Traditional bench press. Learn how to correctly do Extended Plank to target Abs, Shoulders, Back with easy step-by-step expert video instruction. For instance, the right external obliques rotate the body to opposite side, while the right internal rotate to the same side. The muscles utilized in plank include the pectoralis majors (chest), anterior deltoids (fronts of the shoulders), recti abdomina (superficial abdominal muscles), and quadriceps. It also fires up your scapula stabilizers and glutes. The hip abductor muscles work at about 74 percent of their maximum during the plank. Keeping your core braced and your glutes engaged, slowly lower your left hip, tapping it gently on the floor. It helps in strengthening your core with more emphasis on your obliques. While the duration of the performance matters, doing it right is definitely a concern, as it can cause damage to your muscle tissues if done wrong. Do the exercise while balancing in a side plank position and you’ll also challenge your obliques. There are two kinds of oblique muscles: external and internal. 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