Planks are a great way to increase strength and stability in your core musculature. Although there is debate about what muscles are included in the “core,” most people can agree that it at least includes the abdominals. I’ve always believed that the core consists of every muscle in the torso, as they all contribute to some degree to movements that target the “core.” The muscles are fluid in their definition based upon what movement is being performed. The traditional plank is the most known plank exercise, though there are countless other varieties to use depending on your goals.
If you have ever had lower back pain or been in physical therapy for treatment, you most likely heard the term ‘Neutral Spine.’ Neutral spine refers to the position of your spine where all three curves are in proper alignment and there is the least amount of stress placed upon the structures. Not only is there the least amount of stress on the spine, the neutral spine position is also the strongest position. When doing daily activities, it is very important to observe good body mechanics in order to minimize the force through our spine. Good body mechanics begin with a good neutral spine posture. (more…)