How’s your plank? Mine sucks and this is why.


Getting ready to plank. Indy is supervising.

Getting ready to plank. Indy is supervising.

The toe bone’s connected to the heel bone. The heel bone’s connected to the foot bone. The foot bone’s connected to the leg bone. The leg bone’s connected to the knee bone. The knee bone connected to the thigh bone… ♫

While technically the bones connect at the joints, this classic children’s song is a pretty accurate (albeit simplistic) overview of what’s going on under our skin and muscles. And for some reason it always pops into my head when I’m planking.

I usually add verse, though, that goes something like this:

The hamstring muscle group’s connected to the pelvis and fibula/tibia. The iliopsoas connects to the lesser trochanter of the femur. My hamstrings are tight and I sit all day at a desk, and that’s why I can’t plank ♫

You might remember from this post where I talked about my anterior pelvic tilt (for a good overview about what that is and how to correct it, check out this site) and why it’s not something you want to have (it causes poor running form, for one thing, which can lead to injury). My pelvic tilt has improved a lot since I started strength training, but because I sit at a desk for eight hours a day five days a week (and therefore in a flexed position for most of the time), my progress with it has been slow.

Since I had a photo shoot last week where I had to demonstrate various exercises, I thought I would film myself doing a few core exercises to check on my form. It’s not bad, but I can definitely see my anterior pelvic tilt in the plank and push-up. I correct it somewhat when doing the superman pose by dropping my hip.

I threw in a crow pose for good measure. Indy was supervising.

Here’s what a plank should look like:

Aside from getting up often during the day, there isn’t much else I can do to negate the effects of sitting on my posture. Standing desks aren’t an option for me without a doctor’s note, unfortunately. If you have any tips to share that would help with poor posture at work, l would love to hear them!