The plank has been labeled as the “ go to “ core exercise for a long time now because it recruits a variety of major and minor core muscles at once. However, in an industry that’s trending towards functional training the plank doesn’t appear to be on top of the list and I’ll explain why:
We were made to move: The human body was designed to move in all three planes of motion and a plank is an isometric movement that does not include ground reaction or mass vs momentum.
The core was made to react: Our trunks whip, rotate, bend, tilt, and flex because the human body was built to survive the threats of predators. A plank does not simulate any of those types of movements.
Forearms are not a driver: When we are walking down the street the first part of our bodies that make contact with the ground are our feet not our forearms which is why there is a direct link between our feet and our pelvic floor. Ground reaction starts with our feet which is why the most functional and effective way to work your core is from a standing position.
I am not doubting that the plank is an effective isometric core exercise but in my opinion the best core work starts on two feet because the human body was made to move.
CAFS, FMS, USAW