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Stormcrow

Suggested alternatives for plank?

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Hey guys, I'm just getting started with the beginner bodyweight circuit, and it is kicking my ass.  So far, the only things I can do "properly" are the squats and the rows, and I'm not 100% positive I'm doing the squats quite right.  Everything else I have to modify in order to not fall over/get stuck/hurt myself.  Unfortunately, I haven't been able to come up with a modification to the plank that enables me to hold position even for a count of three... a fast three. :(

 

I've tried several things, all to no avail.

I cannot do planks on the floor, I cannot do them against the door.

I cannot do them by the wall, I cannot do them on a ball.

I cannot to them with a spot, I cannot do them on a cot.

I cannot do them on my knees, cannot do them one apiece;

No, not even with motivational cheerleading niece.

(Ridiculously adorable, but alas, not the magic solution.)

 

My body just will not freaking hold a plank, at least not yet.

 

Can anyone suggest a Level 0 exercise that works the same muscles, as a temporary substitute/stepstone?  I don't have any disabilities or documented medical conditions, I'm just very out of shape and very clumsy, which makes anything where I have to get low AND balance a very difficult proposition.

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Where are you failing in the plank? Are your hips sinking? Are your arms getting sore? Are you arching your back? If you spread your legs out for a wider base, are you still falling on your side?

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Further question: are you holding a high push-up position (arms straight) or on your forearms?

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9 minutes ago, Defining said:

Where are you failing in the plank? Are your hips sinking? Are your arms getting sore? Are you arching your back? If you spread your legs out for a wider base, are you still falling on your side?

 

I cannot even get into the position without help.  Almost as soon as help is removed, splat, down I go.  Pretty much straight down as far as I can tell, although sometimes there's a brief fighting wobble.  I think the primary failure point is on my arms... my elbows start screaming as soon as I put weight on them.

 

6 minutes ago, Sylvaa said:

Further question: are you holding a high push-up position (arms straight) or on your forearms?

 

I've tried both and neither seems to work for me.  Straight arms quickly collapse down to bent arms down to faceplant.  I think my arms are just not strong enough yet.

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Bonus poets for poetry! If I  were as talented, I'd give advice back to you in rhyme .

You can do a plank on the wall. Same idea, you just do it standing up , and pretend like the wall is  the floor. Put your hands (or forearms) on the wall,place your legs together. Squeeze your legs together as tight as you can, and try and push the wall away.. When yo get good at that, try doing it with your feet further from the wall.

 

Another idea is to do it on the floor, but have a pillow or mat under your elbows to protect them.

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1 hour ago, Elastigirl said:

Put your hands (or forearms) on the wall,place your legs together. Squeeze your legs together as tight as you can, and try and push the wall away.

I would totally fall over doing it that way! So funny how we all need to tweak cues to ourselves.

 

Personally, I'd stand in front of a wall so that I can touch it with straight arms (and legs spread for balance), and then just lean forward by bending your elbows. If you're careful, you could even transfer from hand to forearm one at a time. Lean into the wall, keeping your body straight.

 

You could also try a totally different core exercise, like deadbugs, bird dogs, glute bridges, supine toe taps, etc.

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22 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

You can do a plank on the wall. Same idea, you just do it standing up , and pretend like the wall is  the floor. Put your hands (or forearms) on the wall,place your legs together. Squeeze your legs together as tight as you can, and try and push the wall away.. When yo get good at that, try doing it with your feet further from the wall.

 

So, like a wall push-up?  Okay, that sounds potentially doable.  I'll give it a try.

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2 hours ago, Stormcrow said:

 

So, like a wall push-up?  Okay, that sounds potentially doable.  I'll give it a try

Exactly. I suggested squeezing your legs together because that helps me keep my core tight. Defining said she thought that sounded too hard to balance and suggested legs apart. Try both and see which works, either way is fine.

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