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Few moves are as good for your midsection as the side plank, yet despite this, it’s often overlooked in favor of the standard face-down, forearm supported, regular Joe variety of plank. There’s nothing wrong with that, but by ignoring the side plank you’re ignoring the often weak muscle called the quadratus lumborum, part of the posterior abdominal wall that plays a prominent role in averting back pain.
Researchers in Finland found that people who had poor muscle endurance in their lower backs are 3 to 4 times more likely to develop on-going lower back problems that those who have fair or good endurance. What constitutes good endurance? Being able to hold a flawless side plank on either side for a minute. But not just once. For a minimum of three sets.
There are several other benefits for going unilateral with your core drills. Working either side of your body separately will help identify any weaknesses in your joints and muscle, helping you address them before they become chronic issues. If you find you can hold a side plank easy on one side and barely at all on the other then there’s an imbalance you need to work on. It’s the same with shoulder presses, lunges and any move you can do unilaterally.
*Start on your side with your feet together and one forearm directly below your shoulder.
*Contract your core and raise your hips until your body is in a straight line from head to feet.
*Hold the position without letting your hips drop for the allotted time for each set, then repeat on the other side. #sideplank #planks #abs #abdominals #abexercises #6pack #workout #justinnutrition #mensphysique #fitfamily #aesthetics #unilateral #unilateraltraining #bestself #midwestfitfam