Fitness/Strength (Video): Partner Plank Drill
Fitness/Strength (Video): Partner Plank Drill

Fitness/Strength (Video): Partner Plank Drill

Dick Moss

The partner plank drill is a variation of the regular plank exercise. (The regular plank is performed on the floor, from a pushup position).

The partner plank improves the abdominal muscles' ability to maintain a strong upright running posture when fatigued.

How to Perform
In the partner plank, two students face each other one or two metres (yards) apart. They lean towards each other, extending one arm until their hands touch, then hold that position, using their partner's hand for support.

The focus is to maintain a shoulder-square, straight-body position. Partners hold for the count of 10 to 20 seconds, then change arms.

This requires activation of the core muscles because only one arm is providing support, so the tendency is to rotate to that side. In order to prevent this, the abs must work hard in order to counteract this natural rotation.

Also, the partners will have to make constant adjustments with their hands in order to maintain their position. This also activates the core muscles - it's specific to running over irregular surfaces, where the core muscles must make constant adjustments in order to maintain optimal body position.

Variation
The two-handed plank can be used before the one-handed plank, to allow your students to become familiar with the exercise. Once they get the hang of it, they can move into the one-handed plank.

The video below demonstrates the partner plank exercise.
Having children crawl between your legs is optional :)


Reference: Darren Jermyn is a coach with the Track North Athletic Club and the Laurentian University Women's Track/XC teams. He is a registered physiotherapist and the Northeastern Ontario stroke coordinator.

 

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