Bear Planks Make Your Whole Body Roar—and That’s a Good Thing

Photo: Stocksy/Jacob Lund
Most trainers would agree that it's a great idea to begin every workout with a plank. Whether you're trying to remain sturdy on your forearms, balancing on one leg, holding a pushup position, or alternating arm lifts, there's really no easy variation. But nothing makes your whole body roar quite like a bear plank.

Like alligator crawls or inchworms, the bear plank is an extra challenging full-body workout. A bear crawl involves getting down on all fours with your knees hovering a few inches off the floor and using your strength to get you from point A to B, but the bear plank is stationary. And even though it might seem like holding still would be easier, you'll quickly realize that's not always the case. A few seconds in and your core—and the rest of your body!—will be on fire.

Here's exactly how to perform a bear plank

The 4 steps to the bear plank:

  1. Start on all fours with your shoulders lined up with your wrists and your knees at a 90-degree angle.
  2. Keeping your back flat, lift your knees, allowing them to hover a few inches off the floor.
  3. Flex your core and hold the position for up to a minute, making sure to breathe.
  4. Slowly bring your knees back down to the floor. Rest for 10 seconds, then repeat.

Here's a six-move core workout with trainer Meg Takacs:

This 7-minute, plank-centric yoga flow will fire up every muscle in your core. And if you're sick of planks, sharpen your workout with "body saws."

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