GRAND RAPIDS, Mich (WOTV) – Build strength, challenge your endurance. Everything you need is in plank pose, or in Sanskrit:Phalakasana (fal-ack-AHS-anna).
In a typical Yoga class you might encounter this pose. Don’t be intimidated by it because it can be performed in a variety of ways and still offer great physical and mental health benefits such as;
- Strengthens the arms, wrists, and shoulders
- Strengthens and tones the abdomen and legs
- Helps strengthen lower back
- Improves endurance
- Builds spinal strength and improves posture
Here are 4 ways you can try this pose from its easiest form to its more advanced offering –
- Start on hands and knees, hands directly under shoulders, knees under hips. Try extending opposite arm and leg as you breathe in and lower as you breath out. This pose known as table top or Bharmanasana, is a great start towards full plank.
- Start on forearms and knees, have elbows directly under shoulders, palms face down. Lift knees and legs extended and hugging towards center. Draw navel to spine and hold while breathing steadily.
- Start on hands and knees, hands placed directly under shoulders, now lift knees reaching back through heels and hold. Breath steadily while drawing lower belly in.
- Same as 3 above however add in lifting one leg at a time reaching straight back thru the ball of the foot. Breath slowly and steadily while engaging core muscles.
Start off trying this pose for 30-60 seconds and then gradually increase your endurance. Next time you have a commercial break see if you can hold a variation of this pose through the entire commercial. Enjoy!