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Plank variations are highly effective for building total body strength beyond just the core muscles.

Here are some key ways plank variations improve overall strength:

→ Shoulder and Arm Strength: Variations like the straight-arm plank and push-up plank engage the shoulders, triceps, and chest muscles to a greater degree than standard planks. (I shall show this in another video) This improves pushing strength and stability.

→ Glute and Leg Strength: Many plank variations like the single-leg plank, side plank with leg raise, and plank jacks challenge the glutes, quads, and hamstrings to remain stable. This translates to improved lower body strength for activities like squatting and lunging.

→ Back Strength: Planks require isometric contraction of the back muscles to maintain a neutral spine position. This builds endurance in the erector spinae muscles that support the spine during lifts.

→ Improved Stability and Balance: Variations that shift your base of support like the single-arm plank and plank with arm/leg raises force your body to resist rotation forces. This enhances core stability and improves balance for lifting and athletic movements.

By training the entire body as an integrated unit, plank variations develop the type of functional strength and stability that carries over to compound lifts like squats, deadlifts, and presses. The ability to resist movement and maintain rigid torso positioning is crucial for safe, efficient lifting.

If you would like more information on my corrective exercise packages please email hannah@beyondthestudiopilates.co.uk.

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