How to do Plank Rows Correctly and Safely

 
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INTRODUCTION

The bulk of our abdominal muscle training should come in the form of core stabilization exercises. The plank is one of the most well-known core stabilizers due to its simplicity and effectiveness.

Many variations exist, but the Plank Row is one of our favorites. It signficantly increases the difficulty of the exercise, while incorporating upper body rotation and balance.

 

PLANK ROW FORM VIDEO

 

BENEFITS OF THE PLANK ROW

  • Effectively teaches core stabilization by strengthening the abdominal muscles' ability to resist spinal extension.

  • Activates the Oblique muscles more than a regular Plank by forcing you to balance yourself while rotating

  • Incorporates upper body rotation and improves total body balance.

 

MUSCLES WORKED DURING THE PLANK ROW

  • Rectus Abdominus
  • Transverse Abdominus
  • Obliques
  • Glutes
  • Upper Back
  • Shoulders

 

PERFORMING THE PLANK ROW

  • Select two light dumbbells and place them on the floor in a vertical orientation, roughly shoulder width apart

  • Squat down and grip the dumbbells without picking them up

  • Assume a Push-Up position, with your elbows locked out, while still maintaining your grip on the weights

  • Set your feet at a stance wider than shoulder width for balance

  • Keep your core muscles, as well as your glute muscles engaged

  • Ensure that your spine is in a flat neutral position

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  • Begin the exercise by lifting either dumbbell up to your chest

  • Keep your elbow tucked and close to your body

  • From this point, rotate your upper body without changing your spinal alignment so that you can bring the dumbbell all the way up in your outstretched arm

  • From this position, we should be able to draw an imaginary straight line from the dumbbell, all the way down to your hand that is still in contact with the floor

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  • Slowly reverse the movement by bringing the dumbbell back down to your chest, and then slowly back down to the starting position

  • Repeat the same movement on the other side

 

 

SUMMARY OF THE PLANK ROW TECHNIQUE

 

Click on each blue circle to view the key technical aspects of this exercise

 

COMMON PLANK ROW MISTAKES

LETTING YOUR SPINE SAG

  • Keep your core and glute muscles engaged throughout the entire lift. Concentrate on rotating at the thoracic spine while keeping every other vertebrae perfectly aligned.

 

EXCESSIVE MOTION FROM THE UPPER BODY

  • Control the weight throughout the entire movement.  This exercise is challenging, ensure that you start very light to obtain the most benefit from the exercise.

 

PLANK ROW ALTERNATIVES


Alex & Brittany Robles are the founders of The White Coat Trainer, a site dedicated to improving the health and wellness of busy individuals. Learn more about them here and connect with them on instagram and Twitter. Feel free to send them a message here