T Nation

Planks and Core Work

Have any of you had success with Planks in the various forms actually strengthening the core? I am just getting back to it after the lay off from surgery (knee, 100% now) and my core is my weakest part.

I know Wendler says situps in 5-3-1, but I also read Stuart McGill saying they are bad etc.

I do both side planks and front planks. I try to mixup my core work so I am not the same things all the time…

Old thread - but I’ve found great value in planks - “standard”, side, one-arm plank/push-ups. Also in moving them to a stability ball. Doing things on the ball like slow or fast knee-raises with a plank can give you a major ab workout.

I’ve also done one-arm rows from a half-plank on a bench - that is a MAJOR core workout. You can alter the parts of your center that you hit by altering the spread of your feet and weight/reps you do. 20 reps with a reasonable weight will light you on fire!

I have scoliosis of the spine. Years ago, was really weak. The doc put me on a 6 week rehab program which include side planks and similiar stuff. It helped a huge amount. Started toughening up the core nicely. I recommend them.

I did a lot of plank work when i was first learning the basic weights moves a few months ago and would say that it was useful work.

Now my own thoughts are to do less planks and more press ups–like doing a plank with a free arms and chest workout as well, i know that doesnt hit the obliques as well as say side planks.

Generally now that i am lifting heavier i do less specific core core work although i will be adding some back in but more along the lines of ‘chops’ and overhead pulls on the cable machine as that more closely mimic some of the functional moves i need to develop.

I love doing planks before and between deadlift sets. It seems to help “set” my body. I also like doing suitcase deads / rack pulls.


I don’t do planks or core work.

I’m old, fat, and impotent.

You do the math.

[quote]mjnewland wrote:
I don’t do planks or core work.

I’m old, fat, and impotent.

You do the math.[/quote]
I was too - still I started working my core :wink: