Planks are great, but you can’t create a strong, firm core from planks alone. You need a toolbox of exercises to pull from for some variation in your routine.
Need a new move to try before you head out for your Memorial Day plans: the V Prayer Reach. This gentle exercise targets your ab muscles, specifically your rectus abdominis and transverse abdominis (the lower ab muscles), explain The Barre Code co-founders Ariana Chernin and Jillian Lorenz. Similar to the plank, though, the exercise doesn’t require any equipment or much space, so you can try it anywhere, anytime. No excuses.
Start lying on your back and raise legs straight into the air. Separate your feet about hip distance apart, creating a “V” shape with your legs. Remember to keep toes pointed and take a deep breath in. Then, place your hands in prayer position at your heart. As you exhale, lift your head, shoulders and upper back off the floor. Straighten your arms, sending your hands between your legs (as shown). Be sure to keep your chin away from your chest and shoulders away from ears. Slowly lower and inhale again. Do 3 sets of 15 reps.
For more core moves, check out:
- Do This 4-Minute Quickie Ab Workout Anytime, Anywhere
- 6 Easy Pilates Abs Moves
- Get a Rock-Solid Core Without Doing a Single Crunch