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Midland Living Magazine

Ready, Set, Plank

Certified Pilates Instructor Hillary Younan shares with us two simple moves to improve fitness and get healthy living goals off to a fresh start for 2021.

After an entire season of indulgent sweets, holiday movies, weather limiting outdoor activity its time to get moving in the new year!
Here are two quick exercises to help strengthen your core, improve balance, alleviate low back pain, and tone muscles.

Side Plank
Start on your side with you knees stacked and your top leg in front and your hand slightly away from you. Use your legs to press into ground and lift your hips off the ground. Make sure that your shoulder is directly over your wrist. Press the ground away from you and keep your hips lifted as you hold.  If you have wrist pain you can do this exercise on your elbow. Hold for 30 seconds and work your way up to at least a minute on each side. When that gets easy try and lift your top leg into the air!
Front Plank
Start in an all four’s position with your shoulders over your wrist and your hips over your knees. Extend on leg behind you, curl your toes under and put weight into that leg and then repeat on your remaining leg. Make sure your tailbone is slightly tucked so that your low back isn’t arched. Press the ground away from you and hold for at least 30 seconds and work your way up to 2 minutes. Alternate between holding the plank on your hands and your elbows. When that gets easy, try holding one leg up in the air behind you!
-Hillary Younan, M.S. CPT, PMA
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