18 Planks That Are Way Better Than Doing Crunches

Core work is an absolute must in your workout routines. Don’t try to get around it, either. You’d be robbing yourself of exercises that help you do everything else better – squats, lunges, Pilates, yoga, reaching up, bending down, stretching, even sex.

The muscles of the core are simply those that support your trunk and pelvis. There are plenty exercises to put them to work. But plankin’ still reigns supreme for conditioning your abs, back, and torso. And, AND, if you practice planks with quality form on a regular basis, you can develop tighter glutes, quads and hamstrings and more with the right variety in your routine. Keep your core workouts fresh by swapping in more challenging moves than your traditional forearm or hand plank. Check out the video below for a batch of our favorites. Some are more advanced than others, so start slow and progress as you can.

Crush editor Stacy Julien is featured here with Jeanette Chandler, CEO of Fit With Jeanette Chandler. Follow her on Instagram at @fit_with_jeanette.

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