Recently reported to me by one of my plank loving students (lol), planking has become a phenomena not just happening in gyms, but as a photobombing activity in the background of other’s pictures.
As I read about this new verb, not to be confused with placing boards during boat building, I also learned that there is a down side to long held plank position (this is forearm plank they are referring to).
Here is an article from one of many women who have seriously injured themselves doing plank for too long, even with correct alignment and position: Planking
I think that the plank position is a great core strengthener. Like the women in this article I started out barely being able to hold the pose. For me many injuries in the past 5 years have kept me from weight bearing in my arms and shoulders and I am just starting to get back to their practice. I began to add plank to my practice about a month ago.
To avoid this condition that I had never heard of before: costochondritis, an inflammation of the cartilage that joins the ribs to the breastbone, I am choosing to do plank for 30 sec to 1 min. and no more, and only several times a week. I am not a gym junkie with competition in mind, but I do appreciate the strength that comes with the practice of plank, forearm plank, side plank and vashithasana.
Please be kind to your bodies. Handle with care and compassion.
Incase the link doesn't work: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3030983/The-ultra-competitive-exercise-fad-ruin-health-called-planking-suddenly-sweeping-gyms-Pilates-classes.html
Lisa Davidson is a Kripalu and Senior certified yoga teacher registered with Yoga Alliance and has been teaching for over 35 years. She offers courses in the Boston Metrowest area and private classes at Longfellow Health Center in Wayland and in your home.