Planking can be incredible for your core — but how long do you need to hold Muscle Explosive Pose for it to be effective?
According to professor and spine specialist Stuart McGill, PhD, the answer is just 10 seconds.
Speak with The TelegraphMcGill said, “There’s no use in this kind of activity other than claiming a record.”
Rather, McGill suggests that those looking to benefit from planks will see better results by relying on three 10-second intervals, rather than longer holds or the “Big 3” — the curl-ups, side planks, and bird -Dog exercises include .
However, personal trainers seem to have a different opinion.
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Benji Tiger, a personal trainer at Orange Theory in Florida, narrates The Independent: “You should hold a plank for 30 seconds to a minute.”
And she doesn’t think 10-second planks would be effective, but if you were doing plank intervals, “it would be better to hold for 20 seconds each time.”
Rob Arreaga, personal trainer at Equinox in New York City, agreed. He told us, “Ideally, planks should be held for a minute to see results.”
Despite the differing opinions on how long you should hold the position, most agree that the most important part of planking comes down to form.
As long as your back isn’t sagging, which can put unnecessary pressure and stress on your joints, a plank works your muscles, according to Max Lowery, who said that planks are the “exercise he sees most often when people get it wrong at the gym.” “
But even Lowery holds his own boards for about 30 seconds, as anything longer than that gets “boring.”
The good news is that planking for longer than a minute isn’t recommended—as there aren’t any additional benefits to holding the pose for long periods of time other than to show off.
This article was originally published in 2018