By Korin Miller, photography courtesy of Instagram
Supermodels, they’re just like us!
If you’ve ever done a plank before, you know it’s a borderline form of torture. That’s why Gigi Hadid is getting serious props for doing an interview on camera while planking.
The interview, which was conducted by her trainer Rob Piela and shot for Reebok’s #PerfectNever campaign, is impressive—but you can clearly see Gigi struggle the longer she planks because, hello, she’s human. During the interview, Gigi answers Qs on a range of things, like ways to be positive (call your mom and eat well) and what she would tell her younger self (everything works itself out). Again, while freaking planking.
Check out the video:
She does the whole thing for a minute—with some chastising from Rob when she breaks form—before she decides she’s over the planking part.
READ MORE: Fitness 101: How To Master The Plank
The video is a good reminder that planking is hard AF. And while registered dietician, Albert Matheny, of SoHo Strength Lab and Promix Nutrition, says that form is important when it comes to the exercise, he also notes that “anyone’s plank will look bad if they hold it long enough.” After all, form is always a challenge and something to keep working on in every fitness routine.
When you plank, you really want to have a “strong body line” that goes from your ears and passes through the shoulders, hips, and knees, to the ankles, says Doug Sklar, a certified personal trainer and founder of New York City-based fitness training studio PhilanthroFIT. While you’re at it, focus on drawing your belly button into your spine. And, while Gigi did her plank with her hands clasped, Sklar recommends separating your hands and trying to keep them in line with your shoulders. “This activates the shoulder muscles which will really benefit you when performing other upper body exercises,” he says
To keep your form in check when you plank, Matheny recommends lining yourself up parallel to a mirror. Then, check to make sure that your shoulders are over your elbows and pulled down away from your ears. You’ll also want to have a straight line from the back of your head to your hips, he says, so look at the floor when you do the exercise.
If you’re working out with a partner, you can always have them place something straight like a broom handle, yard stick, or whatever you have handy on the back of your head, mid-upper back, and top of your butt. “The space between the stick and your lower back should only provide enough space for about half of a hand to fit,” Sklar says. So, if your workout buddy can fit their hand or arm all the way through, you’re arching your lower back too much, which can cause an injury.
While you’re in the moment, he recommends bracing with your abs and squeezing your glutes, inner thighs, and quads to max out your planking.
Check out these 10 plank variations that’ll help you mix up your workout routine:
If you want to get the most out of planking, Matheny says it’s a good idea to do it for a shorter amount of time with stronger engagement. “Less than 1 percent of people can hold a strong, engaged plank for one minute,” he says. “Focus not on duration but on the intensity that you engage in the static position.”
Total planking newbie? Sklar recommends having short interval goals, like holding a plank for 10 seconds with a 20 second rest, for a total of 60 seconds. Over time, you can build up to 60-second holds for multiple sets. And soon enough, you’ll be talking through them just like Gigi.
This article was originally published on www.womenshealthmag.com