You might have heard about planking in the news as the silly fad performed by people lying face down in the most uncommon places possible and then taking pictures of their poses. Although it might look the same, this is not the planking that we are recommending. This planking we are about to show you is another routine that you can do as part of your health and weight loss exercise routines , while on the floor, in a mat, or a carpet, playing, or watching television with your baby. It looks so simple that people cannot believe that the American Council on Exercise have found out that this simple posture target the abs in the most effective way. It’s important to take note though that, while abdominal exercises such as this do not directly get rid of fat from your belly, it develops a strong core that is important to keeping your body healthy as well as protecting your spine while you do your exercise routines or your daily tasks. It is also a good way to tone your stomach muscles and lose tummy fat. So without further ado we bring you the simple steps to the original (not the fad) plank:

  1. Lie face down on mat, floor, or carpet. Rest on your forearms. Keep your palms flat on the floor.

  2. Push off the floor and rise up onto your toes and resting on the elbows.

  3. Keep your back flat. Keep your body in a straight line from head to heels.

  4. Now tilt your pelvis and contract your abdominals to prevent your rear end from sticking up in the air or sagging in the middle.

  5. Hold for 20 to 60 seconds or as long as you wish, then lower and repeat for 3-5 reps.

Note that it will help you perfect your form if you pull your belly button towards your spine. This trick shall help you engage the abdominal muscles that help support your back. If your body starts to shake after holding the plank for a few seconds, this indicates that more work is needed to stabilize and strengthen your abdominal region. If you regularly do this exercise, you will notice great improvement in your core strength, balance and coordination. It would be great to incorporate this as a warm up or warm down in your weight loss exercise routine. Notice that planking is so simple it can be performed anywhere at any time and can even be incorporated in your daily routines.