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Exercise Instructions for 3 Pilates Plank Variations


Updated February 07, 2011

3 of 4

Side Plank Set Up
Side Plank Exercise

Side Plank Step 1


Side plank is more difficult than the last two plank positions we worked with, plain and dolphin arm. Supporting yourself in a sideways position is much less stable.

In Pilates we take advantage of unstable positions to help us develop core strength as the core muscles have to work hard to make the subtle adjustments that keep the form we want.

Side plank takes support from the whole body, especially the abs. But in side plank you are going to need your core to provide even more stability for the pelvis, and you will need a lot of shoulder stability and arm strength as well.

  1. Begin sitting sideways with your legs folded to the side. Put your top foot on the floor in front of the other, heel to toe. Feel that you are seated with deep creases at your hips, allowing even the top hip to drop toward the mat.

  2. Place your supporting hand on the mat straight out to the side, just a few inches beyond your shoulder.

  3. Before you press up, draw your abs in, drop your shoulders, and lengthen your spine.
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