Plank is one of the more difficult yoga poses to master, but it can also be very healing. When you practice plank pose, you'll stretch and challenge a range of muscles, and is often utilized in the sports world to tone the core.
- Start on all fours, with your arms extended straight down from your shoulders and knees extended straight down from your hips.
- Warm up your shoulders and upper back by gently rolling your shoulders backward.
- Take a deep breath. Press down through your pinkies and use the downward force to widen your back.
- Step back with one foot and then the other. Balance on the balls of your feet.
- Engage your core, pull your ribs up, and reach back through your heels to keep your body from sagging.
- If you feel pain in your wrists, roll the front of your mat back a few inches. Position your hands over the fold to elevate your palms.
- For even more support, place a yoga block on its end underneath your hips and rest on it with your pubic bone. The block's extra support will help you concentrate on lengthening your spine and on keeping your breath steady and even.
- Breathe into each area of your back.
- Engage your core and find parallel channels in your legs.
- Challenge yourself by raising up off the block and lowering back down a few times. This will help you feel the alignment of the pose.
- For an even bigger challenge, walk your feet together. Lift one leg, then the other.
- When you're done, let your body relax into child's pose for at least three breaths.
Plank pose helps strengthen and stretch your core and back. Though it's a difficult yoga pose to perfect, its benefits make it a worthwhile addition to any yoga routine.