Skip Nav

How to Do a Plank With a Side Step

I'm a Trainer, and This Plank Variation Is My Favourite Ab Exercise at the Moment

Planks will forever be one of my go-to ab exercises because they can be modified for any fitness level, they can be done absolutely anywhere, and I feel them working instantly. Another reason I like the plank is because there are so many variations to do, which in my mind equates to so many new challenges.

One plank variation I almost forgot about until a few weeks ago is the plank with a side step. I like this variation because it really challenges my core strength. In a traditional plank, your body is learning how to avoid excessive arching of the lumbar spine (your lower back), which is pretty challenging in itself.

By adding a moving component (moving your legs in and out), you're forced to use your abdominal muscles more to stabilise and prevent your spine from rounding or arching. I also like this move because the gluteus medius muscles (one of the three glute muscles located on the upper side of your buttocks) become activated, which help stabilise the hips and pelvis. As a result, stability in the core, pelvis, and hip regions can prevent lower back, hip, knee, and ankle problems. If the standard plank is beginning to feel easy and you want more of a challenge, give this move a shot.

How to Do a Plank With Side Step

  • Start in an elbow plank.
  • Extend your left leg out to the side, about eight inches, gently tapping your toes on the ground.
  • Bring your foot back into a plank. Repeat the same movement with your right leg.
  • Complete 10 reps on each leg.
Image Source: Getty / PeopleImages
More from POPSUGAR
From Our Partners
The Best Type of Exercise to Relieve Stress
Bodyweight HIIT Workout For Butt and Legs by Massy Arias
A Fun Total-Body Workout Set to Dua Lipa's "Physical"
Butt and Leg Workout Set to "Savage" by Megan Thee Stallion
30-Minute No-Equipment Full-Body Workout
Total-Body Slider Workout You Can Do at Home
Feel Rejuvenated Thanks to This Kundalini Yoga Flow
Strength-Training Exercises That Require No Equipment
A Love Is Blind Workout Game to Play While Watching
20-Minute Single Dumbbell Workout From Massy Arias
Fitness Marshall Dance Workout Set to "Work From Home"
Is It Safe to Run Outside During the Coronavirus Outbreak?
Latest Health & Fitness
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds