Hello and welcome everyone to another edition of Fey Fitness! Today I am teaching you how to do another plank exercise called a Side Plank Leg Raise. This exercise is perfect for someone who is at an intermediate or advanced fitness level and is looking to mix up their core and lower body workout routine.
I love planks for three main reasons. For one, a plank is a total body exercise that engages everything from your head to your toes. Two, there are about a thousand different versions of planks, each that can target specific muscles more than the rest to create a fully customized fitness routine. And three, is that performing a plank isn’t very time consuming. Most people need between 90 seconds to three minutes in order to reap the benefits of various plank exercises.
Why Do a Side Plank Leg Raise?
- Most side planks are performed while you are balancing on one forearm, which is a fantastic way to strengthen your shoulders, wrists, upper and forearms.
- Side planks really work that core! The entire abdominal cavity needs to be strong and engaged in order to keep you in this position, so you are strengthening your tummy for a sexy summer body.
- You are also working on your balance. Being in a side plank means you are supporting the body on its side with just the forearm and feet keeping you off the ground. So the body engages more stabilizer muscles to keep you steady during the exercise.
- A side plank works the quadratus lumborum, which is a part of your posterior abdominal wall, which helps reduce the risk of developing back pain from whatever you might be doing in your daily life.
- Lifting the leg during at Side Plank Leg Raise works the entire leg (glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, adductors, abductors) during both the ascent and descent of the movement. Also, the leg that is supporting you by keeping you off the ground is getting a great workout as well.
How to Perform a Side Plank Leg Raise:
- Bust out a yoga mat or other surface that is level and won’t hurt your feet or forearms.
- Come over onto your left side with your left elbow on the ground directly under your shoulder and forearm planted firmly on the ground and your left foot planted on the ground as well.
- Engage your core and bring yourself up off the floor so your spine is straight and your body is in a straight line from head to toes. Your left forearm and feet will be the only things touching the ground at this point. NOTE: If you are having trouble balancing, feel free to place your right hand on the ground to help stabilize you until you are confident or strong enough to take the right hand off the ground.
- Without locking your knees, but keeping both legs straight, raise the right leg up into the air as high as you can.
- Once you raise the right leg as high as it will go, return it to the starting position on top of the left leg.
- Repeat steps 4 & 5 10-15 times.
- Now you can repeat steps 1 to 6 on the right side of your body.
- Continue rotating sides for 2-3 sets.
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