Actually, wrong. Although the humble plank does indeed tone, strengthen and condition your core, resident WH PT Amy Hopkinson thinks there's actually a better exercise out there.
Despite their perceived easiness – lying on the floor doesn't really come across as taxing – deadbugs are actually one of the best core moves you can do.
Why? Well, it's a super simple move and very good bang for buck, as it engages so many different muscle groups. It's also important for keeping your body guessing, so if you've been plank, plank, planking, this one's a good mix up for you.
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Incorporating core moves into your workout routine is essential for improving your overall strength. Think about it—you use your core for everything. Getting out of bed, walking to work, and picking up your shoes from the floor.
Your core is the base that supports your entire body. Build a strong core, and in turn you'll reduce risk of fatigue, back pain and muscle injury. Not bad.
So if staring at the floor with gritted teeth in a plank has really got your goat, mix up your moves with deadbugs.
What is a deadbug?
Hopkinson explains, that despite its quirky name, this core conditioning move predominantly works abs, but also arms, glutes and thighs.
It's also great as it can be practised in front of Marie — aka from the comfort of your own home — and only requires your mind and muscle.
How do I do a deadbug?
1. Lie on your back with your arms above your shoulders, a taught resistance band in each hand.
2. Bring your legs into tabletop.
3. Keeping your arms straight, stable and strong, alternate lowering and lifting each leg, ensuring your lower back remains melted into the floor.
4. If you want to make the move harder, try gripping a resistance band between both hands. Or, add in weighted ankle straps or a dumbbell.
What not to do when you're attempting a deadbug
Do not rush through this exercise, you'll get the best results when working slow and steady.
The same goes for your breathing: inhale, slowly, through your nose. Exhale forcefully – but controlled – through your mouth.
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Throughout this exercise focus on keeping your back on the floor; banana upwards and you're not in the right position.
Lastly, don't over-egg the exercise. Working towards 2-3 sets of 5-8 repetitions is sufficient.
So what are you waiting for? Incorporate this move into your daily routine for killer abs in no time.
This article originally appeared on Women's Health UK.