How Many Calories Does a Plank Burn?
Planking is a popular exercise that targets multiple muscles in the body, primarily the core. It is known for its ability to strengthen the abdominal muscles, improve posture, and increase overall stability. Apart from these benefits, many people wonder how many calories planking can actually burn. In this article, we will explore the calorie-burning potential of planks and answer some common questions related to this exercise.
Planking and Calorie Burn
Planking is a static exercise, meaning that it involves holding a certain position for an extended period. Unlike dynamic exercises like running or cycling, planking doesn’t involve a lot of movement. However, this doesn’t mean that it doesn’t burn calories.
According to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, a person weighing around 150 pounds can burn approximately 3-4 calories per minute while planking. This means that if you hold a plank position for 10 minutes, you can burn approximately 30-40 calories.
Factors Affecting Calorie Burn
The number of calories burned during planking can vary from person to person due to several factors. These factors include:
1. Body weight: The more you weigh, the more calories you will burn during planking.
2. Muscle mass: People with higher muscle mass tend to burn more calories, even at rest.
3. Intensity: The more challenging the plank position, the more calories you are likely to burn.
4. Duration: The longer you hold the plank position, the more calories you will burn.
Common Questions About Planking and Calories Burned
1. Can planking help you lose belly fat?
Planking can contribute to overall fat loss, including belly fat, when combined with a healthy diet and regular exercise.
2. Can planking alone help you lose weight?
While planking is an effective exercise for strengthening the core, it is not a standalone solution for weight loss. It should be combined with a balanced diet and other forms of exercise for optimal results.
3. How long should you plank to burn calories?
To burn a significant number of calories, aim to hold a plank position for at least 10 minutes. However, start with shorter durations and gradually increase as your endurance improves.
4. Can planking help build muscle?
Yes, planking can help build core muscles, including the abs, obliques, and lower back muscles.
5. Does planking burn more calories than sit-ups?
Planking and sit-ups target different muscle groups. While planking engages the entire core, sit-ups primarily focus on the abdominal muscles. Both exercises can contribute to calorie burn and muscle development.
6. Is it better to do one long plank or multiple short planks?
Both approaches have their benefits. One long plank challenges your endurance, while multiple short planks with breaks in between can help maintain correct form and reduce muscle fatigue.
7. Can planking be done every day?
Yes, planking can be done daily. However, it is essential to listen to your body and provide adequate rest and recovery time.
8. Can planking help improve posture?
Yes, planking strengthens the core muscles, which play a crucial role in maintaining good posture.
9. Can planking help with back pain?
Yes, planking can help strengthen the muscles that support the spine, potentially reducing back pain.
10. Can planking be modified for beginners?
Yes, beginners can modify planks starting with their knees on the ground instead of the toes. This reduces the intensity while still providing core engagement.
11. Can planking be done during pregnancy?
Planking during pregnancy should be discussed with a healthcare provider. In some cases, modified planks may be safe, while in others, it may be advised to avoid the exercise altogether.
12. Can planking help with balance and stability?
Yes, planking engages the muscles responsible for balance and stability, which can be beneficial for overall body coordination.
13. Can planking cause injuries?
Planking, when done with proper form, is generally safe. However, incorrect technique or overexertion can lead to strains or injuries. It is essential to perform planks with proper alignment and listen to your body’s limits.
14. Can planking be combined with other exercises?
Yes, planking can be combined with other exercises such as push-ups or mountain climbers for a more intense full-body workout.
In conclusion, planking can indeed burn calories, although the number may vary depending on individual factors. Incorporating planks into your fitness routine can help strengthen your core, improve posture, and contribute to overall calorie burn. Remember to start slowly, maintain proper form, and combine planks with other exercises for a well-rounded fitness program.