4 Hardest Plank Variations for Strong Abs

1. Plank Banded Adduction

This move complements the banded abduction (Slide 4) quite well. Also, it’s a core blaster that’ll target and strengthen the groin area.

How to Do It: 

  • Loop a band around a stationary object and put one leg through the band loop.
  • Set up in a plank so that the banded leg is closer to the anchor location.
  • Slightly lift the banded leg off the ground, open your legs, and guide the banded leg toward the anchor.
  • When you reach your maximum range of motion, drive your banded leg back toward your body and squeeze it against your grounded leg.
  • Repeat for 3 sets of 10 reps for each leg.

2. Plank Plate Pull-through

This advanced variation of the plank challenges your stability on another level as you pull a small plate across and underneath your body. As a bonus, your shoulders will get a pump.

How to Do It: 

  • Start in a normal plank position, with a plate on one side of your body.
  • Brace your core and then reach under­ neath yourself with the arm opposite the side the plate is on.
  • Grab it and then pull it through.
  • Repeat for 3 sets of 10 reps on each side.

3. Plank Banded Row

This plank combo challenges your bal­ ance and helps develop your lats and biceps as you pump them up with each rep.

How to Do It: 

  • In a plank, about a foot away from a band looped to a power rack, drive your elbow down toward your rib cage, squeezing your lat.
  • Slowly extend arm back out.
  • Do 3 sets of 10 reps for each arm.

4. Plank Banded Abduction

This variation adds a rotational element to the traditional plank hold, which is great for lower­body prehab work, glute develop­ ment, and knee stability.

How to Do It:

  • Loop a band around a stationary object. Before you get set in your plank position, step one leg through the loop, just below the knee.
  • Drive the banded knee out wide, using the glute to squeeze it at the top.
  • Repeat for 3 sets of 10 reps for each leg.

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