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Exercise Instructions for 3 Pilates Plank Variations

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Updated February 07, 2011

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Dolphin Arm Plank
Dolphin Plank

Lara Kolesar Shows Dolphin Arm Plank

(c)Marguerite Ogle 2009
Dolphin arm plank is an interesting variation taken from yoga. Though it is very similar to the plank we do with straight arms, some people feel it drives even more effort into the core abdominal and back muscles.
  1. Begin as you did for regular plank, on your hands and knees. Then move your elbows to the floor directly under your shoulders.

    Your forearms can extend on the floor straight in front of you with your hands flat, or your hands can be clasped with fingers entwined. Make sure your shoulders are back and down, and your chest is open.

  2. Keep your abdominal muscles pulled in to support the movement as you step back into a plank position. Again, your legs are together. The length of your body is supporting this move -- it is not focused only in the upper body.

  3. It is tempting to either sag in the middle or let the butt be too high. Both positions make things easier on the core, but it's the core that we want to work! So make sure you are in a straight line.

  4. Hold for 3 to 5 breaths. Release and repeat 1 or 2 more times.
Both regular plank and dolphin arm plank are good exercises for testing your symmetry side to side. The shoulders should be even on both sides as should your pelvis. Double check that alignment so that you increase your shoulder and pelvic stability as you work.

Try the most advanced plank position, side plank.
Related Video
Simple Exercise Warm Up
Develop Exercise Habits With Your Children

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