High Plank Your Way into the New Year
With the dawn of a new year upon us, many are rushing to set goals, deciding which latest training program, regimen, or diet is best. Chances are, if you are like me, you might have a tendency to over complicate things. So, let’s combat our inclinations and stick to fundamentals. After all, developing strong fundamentals helps us to build a strong foundation upon which to build, and the good news is…you can implement this exercise virtually anywhere.
The high plank can be found in many training routines, and is a staple in Vinyasa and Ashtanga yoga. While the high plank may not be held for a long duration, a solid high plank is the first step to chaturanga dandasana (4 limbed-staff pose), also known as the tricep pushup, common in most vinyasa flows.
A strong plank is imperative for a proper, effective chatarunga. If you have weak shoulders or poor shoulder alignment, the following steps can be done while in a forearm plank.
Start in a table-top position. Bring shoulders over the wrists, while keeping the all portions of the hands down on your mat. Step both legs back into a plank position.
This is where you do your personal inventory of shoulders, elbows, and wrists. If sharp pain is happening in those joints, now is the time to get on your forearms (shoulders over elbows).
If you have a mirror available, check your hips and make sure they are in line with your upper body. Keep that form and bring your neck back to its neutral state, aligned with your spine.
Without putting all your weight in your lower body, engage your legs. Distribute your weight evenly from your heels to the crown of the head.
Hold for 30 seconds to one minute depending on your medical history and skill level. To release, slowly drop your knees to the ground.
Your physical regimen is a practice. Your strength may vary from one day to the next. Embrace where you are physically, enjoy the journey, and listen to your body.