Venus Williams’ Go-to, Strength-Building Move Is the Plank

To say that Venus Williams is a forced to be reckoned with on the court would be like saying “the Earth is round” or “the sky is blue". Because, duh: She’s one of the greatest athletes of all-time. But what you see on the clay is the result of thousands of hours of training—yes, at the net, but also in the gym.

"Strength training is empowering,” she says. "You feel better than your best when you nail a workout. It’s that victory mindset that drives you on your fitness journey—whether you’re hitting the court or not. I always say you have to be an eleven out of ten, and strength training makes you feel that way.”

This idea of being an “eleven out of ten” is the impetus behind the tennis pro's activewear line, EleVen, which is meant to inspire women to push themselves to the fullest at the gym and give them the wardrobe to make it possible. "As an athlete, I understand how clothes have to perform no matter the workout. As a designer, I want to create something beautiful for my audience,” she says, citing the brand’s latest Caracas collection (launching Wednesday) as one of her favorites yet. "You've gotta wear clothes that move with you and support your hustle."

"I've got to praise the plank here," - Venus Williams.

And, for her, the hustle involves mixing it up. "No two workouts are the same for me—I’m always on the go traveling or in tournament mode so my workout depends on what I need to put the focus on,” she says. "I don’t have a go-to routine in the gym but I like it that way. Some days, it’s all about plyo. On other days, I like a good Vinyasa flow. You have to add variety to workouts.”

Despite having access to the bougiest gyms and best trainers in the world, her go-to move is one that anyone can do on their own, no equipment required. "I've got to praise the plank here. It helps you build a strong core and comes in handy when the weather heats up again. Add variations to your plank so you’re getting the most out of it," she says. Variety even within a single, full-body move? Take it from the pro.

While you may not be able to replicate Venus Williams' title-winning tennis skills on your own, you can DIY her workouts with some of our favorite plank variations and plyo-pushups, plus a green juice recipe you'll be dying to drink post sweat. 

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