A tried and true exercise, the plank is an extremely effective workout for everyone, especially athletes and crossfitters that want to get their bodies in top condition.
Why is core strength important for athletes?
Studies have shown that core strength affects an athlete’s ability to not only develop, but also to transfer forces to their body’s limbs.
Crunches are not the most effective exercise to help strengthen and build muscle in your core. Athletes and their trainers understand that the plank exercise is the best way to work abdominal muscles. Engaging your abdominals, quadriceps and shoulder girdles, the plank also incorporates a workout for your glutes, lats and low back.
Sit-ups and crunches are hard on the lower back. They push the spine flat against the floor, which can cause pain. Athletes and crossfitters do not need to injure their bodies, which is why the plank is an all-encompassing workout that focuses on efficiently using core muscles. Athletes cannot afford to have lower back injuries.
Planks also help stretch out the lower body. Holding plank position helps to lengthen the arches of the feet and hamstrings. Stretching helps to warm the tendons, muscles and joints, which actually prepares the body for the upcoming physical exertion involved in sports.
Why does the plank exercise deliver results for athletes?
Athletes use the plank because it relies on holding a certain movement to help fatigue muscles. When planking, the core is squeezed hard, which offers a maximum voluntary contraction. Additional benefits of the plank include:
- It is an isometric exercise. This strength training exercise does not change the muscle length or joint angle while your abdominal muscles are contracting. As an added bonus, research shows that isometric exercises show benefits at 60 to 80-percent of someone’s maximum effort.
- The plank relies only on your body weight.
- The exercise engages multiple groups of muscles in your core and entire body.
Stealth Body Fitness has used today’s modern technology to develop a plank machine. Instead of holding boring planks, athletes, crossfitters and anyone that wants to gain core strength, can use this gaming device to make planks fun and competitive.
By incorporating a gameplay experience into Stealth’s plank machine, people can compete globally by playing games and earning points for holding planks for one minute, two minutes, three minutes or longer.
Check out how Stealth has reinvented planking and get fit today.