EXERCISE BREAKDOWN: HOLLOW BODY PLANK
HOW TO DO IT
START LIKE A PUSH UP – you can get that far right?
HAND POSITION OPTIONS – for different reasons, especially as we progress, you can do these with the hands pointing forwards, or straight out, or ‘underhand’ – as I call it. For now, point them forward unless told otherwise. If your wrists don’t like this, turn them back or out. Once you’ve mastered forwards, master backwards.
BUT LOCK YOUR ARMS – they must be completely straight. Elbow pit/biceps spun forward, a little stretch of the Biceps Tendon. Triceps should be feeling activated.
DRAW YOUR BELLY BUTTON IN – like on the dish.
ROTATE YOUR PELVIS BACK – use your ab strength. The arch in your back should disappear. This is the hollow position.
SPREAD YOUR SHOULDER BLADES – now, push your shoulder blades apart. As you do this your torso should move forward slightly, you should slide forward on your toes. Look just ahead.
SLIDE FORWARDS – now – if you haven’t already – slide forwards so your shoulders are just past your hands.
HOLD – or go back and do multiple reps if you are just learning the position. Build this up to a minute then you are definitely ready for a progression.
HOW IT GOES WRONG AND HOW TO FIX IT
ARMS NOT LOCKED – learning to lock the arms and hold takes most people, even strong people quite a while. Use the ‘get away from the floor’ cue below & practice the arm position on basic wrist mobility drills if you still can’t get it.
PELVIS NOT TILTED – firstly, it takes strength and secondly it takes awareness. Go practice the fancy pelvic rotation drills and you’ll get the hang of it.
YOUR WRISTS HURT – It happens sadly. Practice patiently. Stop when your wrists start hurting and come back another day and start great. Work on all the wrist drills and gradually add load and time under stress.
YOU PIKE UP – the hips go too high.. Why? Probably because you haven’t quite mastered posterior pelvic tilt. Work on it, and get a buddy (or your phone camera if you don’t have one) to check your position.
FAILURE TO SPREAD SHOULDER BLADES – this is a strength and an awareness problem. To redeem yourself, practice with your knees down. Then transition back to the real thing.
FEET – people often keep their toes dug in on this. That’s no food. Watch the video again, we need to let them slide forward.
LOCK PELVIS BACK – once it’s there, it doesn’t move!
FEEL UPPER BACK – if the shoulder blades are protracted properly, you’ll feel a stretch across the upper back. Push into that and you’ll be in a great position.
TURTLE BACK – imagery baby.
GET AWAY FROM THE FLOOR – if it goes wrong, especially in the arms or the shoulder blades, there is a bloody good chance you are too close to the floor!
STRETCH BICEP – feel the tendon stretch over your elbow pit? This, for many is a great trigger that you’re in position.
PROGRESSIONS / REGRESSIONS
Wrist mobility drills – adding a little bit of load.
Pseudo Planche Push Ups
WHY O WHY??
ABDOMINAL STRENGTH – firstly we all want strong good looking Abs right? This will help, plus it will develop your Abs in a very functional manner – very transferable to other cool stuff.
TRICEP AND SHOULDER STRENGTH – not sure how to elaborate on that really.
BASIC GYMNASTICS WITH LOADS OF PROGRESSIONS – this is a fundamental gymnastics move which transfers directly into loads of other stuff which is both fun to train, and great for building muscle and strength with no equipment required. Take these seriously. The payoffs are large and handsome.