Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Plank position

Old 07-31-19, 12:23 PM
  #1  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Plank position

I bring this up because it may serve to benefit others in a similar physical state as myself. I have had for many years now, and still do have what I would describe as "back discomfort" just going through daily routine life. I also just call it "old man back". It's hard being 43 years old It leaks into my cycling due to the leaned over position which is customary. Cycling itself has made me more fit and helped with my back discomfort. Something else I found that brought on great relief to being in my cycling position is practicing the plank position. So this really translates to core strengthening I suppose.




I found that if I get down in a plank for even just 30 seconds, just 1-2 times per day, I notice a significant difference in the way I feel when on my bike. I feel much more at ease and stronger overall in that particular seated position. When I am really disciplined, I hold the position from 30-60 seconds at a time and repeat at least a few times a day, and I really feel great.

On the other hand, as easy as it is to set aside 30-60 seconds, just 1-3 times a day, I often times get lazy. When I catch myself getting lazy and going plankless for a week, 2 weeks, and longer, I definitely feel it when I ride. Crazy, right? Such a simple and non time consuming move can make such a positive difference. Or if I don't do it, my overall ride suffers because of the discomfort which occupies my mind away from the real task at hand. I usually bail out earlier than what I would plan because I'm just not comfortable.

I highly recommend working the plank into your day if you suffer from back discomfort while riding. I also imagine it could benefit all cyclist.

Do you do any relatively quick and easy exercises or stretches that you feel have great benefit for your cycling?
bradyweb is offline  
Likes For bradyweb:
Old 07-31-19, 02:19 PM
  #2  
55murray
Senior Member
 
55murray's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Lafayette, Indiana
Posts: 348

Bikes: 1955 20" Murray modified cruiser, 2007 Trek 7.3 FX, 1980 Miyata 610, several other vintage coaster brake machines

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 166 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 15 Posts
Originally Posted by bradyweb View Post
Do you do any relatively quick and easy exercises or stretches that you feel have great benefit for your cycling?
Oh yes, even do some planks. My lower back is my weak spot on long rides (up to a century), and core work is required - and it does not take much really. My favorite is the one where you get on all fours and hold out the opposite arm and leg and hold - I can tell it is hitting the exact same muscle that bothers me on rides. Also some yoga poses and push ups (I like a fair amount of hand pressure when I ride, I think a bit more than most folks). And some yoga sun salutes, if you did not know anything about yoga you would think a road cyclist invented them.
55murray is offline  
Likes For 55murray:
Old 07-31-19, 03:05 PM
  #3  
caloso
Senior Member
 
caloso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Posts: 38,489

Bikes: Ridley Excalibur, Gazelle Champion Mondial, On-One Pompino, Specialized Rock Hopper

Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2027 Post(s)
Liked 448 Times in 250 Posts
I went to an offseason strength and flexibility class this winter where a lot of the floor work was yoga-adjacent. Various types of planks. One I thought was really excellent was to get on all fours and then raise the opposite hand and foot straight out. The twist is to put a squishy ball under one of the support points (hand or knee) while you do this. Move the squishy ball to a new hand or knee and repeat until you've done all four.
caloso is online now  
Likes For caloso:
Old 07-31-19, 03:23 PM
  #4  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by 55murray View Post
My favorite is the one where you get on all fours and hold out the opposite arm and leg and hold - I can tell it is hitting the exact same muscle that bothers me on rides.

I'm definitely going to try this one out this evening. The little I do does help me out so much. I just have to make sure to keep it going as I know it pays off on my rides.
bradyweb is offline  
Old 07-31-19, 03:24 PM
  #5  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by caloso View Post
One I thought was really excellent was to get on all fours and then raise the opposite hand and foot straight out. The twist is to put a squishy ball under one of the support points (hand or knee) while you do this. Move the squishy ball to a new hand or knee and repeat until you've done all four.
Sounds very advanced, but I'll have to give it a whirl!
bradyweb is offline  
Old 07-31-19, 03:25 PM
  #6  
Wildwood
Veteran/Pacifist/Resister
 
Wildwood's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Seattle area
Posts: 9,011

Bikes: Bikes??? Thought this was social media?!?

Mentioned: 206 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1943 Post(s)
Liked 232 Times in 172 Posts
Good thread.

...have to laugh at 'old man back', and 'it's hard being 43yo '. Sounds like your next birthday will celebrate feeling 70 years old - my next.
Wildwood is offline  
Likes For Wildwood:
Old 07-31-19, 03:39 PM
  #7  
berner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Bristol, R. I.
Posts: 3,652

Bikes: Specialized Secteur, old Peugeot

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 379 Post(s)
Liked 99 Times in 77 Posts
Core strengthening is what keeps my back in working order. There are numerous variations on core exercises so I rotate them to avoid stale efforts. Have been doing them for many years. Same for knee strengthening.
berner is offline  
Likes For berner:
Old 07-31-19, 03:49 PM
  #8  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by Wildwood View Post
Good thread.

...have to laugh at 'old man back', and 'it's hard being 43yo '. Sounds like your next birthday will celebrate feeling 70 years old - my next.
I hope by the time I'm 70 I will have done all the things necessary to reverse this "old man back"
bradyweb is offline  
Old 07-31-19, 03:52 PM
  #9  
caloso
Senior Member
 
caloso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Sacramento, California, USA
Posts: 38,489

Bikes: Ridley Excalibur, Gazelle Champion Mondial, On-One Pompino, Specialized Rock Hopper

Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2027 Post(s)
Liked 448 Times in 250 Posts
Originally Posted by bradyweb View Post
Sounds very advanced, but I'll have to give it a whirl!
It takes a little getting used to but it really forces you to concentrate on being still and balanced.
caloso is online now  
Likes For caloso:
Old 07-31-19, 03:58 PM
  #10  
rosefarts
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 821
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 331 Post(s)
Liked 77 Times in 38 Posts
I do a few.

Bent over rows. This serves to engage the low back muscles unlike the same motion on a machine. I do this for relief of a pinched nerve in my upper back but I won't lift a weight I'm not strong enough to support with my lower.

Low back extension. Bend over and straighten up while keeping everything tight. This really seems to help my 41 year old "old man back"

The other I do is the classic kettle bell swing between the legs and up thing. It's the one you see in any commercial to show how dedicated to fitness someone it. It's mostly a leg workout but I like it because it does move through a whole lot of joints dynamically. I just use a dumbell and hold on tight.

I also do a dumbell bench press just because I think I should. At <140, I am not worried about getting too swole.
rosefarts is offline  
Likes For rosefarts:
Old 07-31-19, 04:05 PM
  #11  
guachi
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 134
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 58 Post(s)
Liked 36 Times in 29 Posts
GCN had a video with Emma Pooley - one of her first videos - where she does a number of core exercises that include the stuff mention here. She did planks, the all-fours-raise-opposite-hands-and-feet, and some other things that turn out to be yoga poses. I didn't know they were yoga, they just looked useful.

Another video had exercises to stretch your psoas muscle. Step forward and bend your knee. Raise your hands to the sky to keep your back straight. You should feel it in your psoas/hip flexor. Alternate steps across the floor.

Another one: Stand straight. Bend over at your waist keeping your legs straight. Lean forward until your hands are on the ground. Walk out your hands to the push up position (or farther if you're adventurous). Walk your feet towards your hands keeping your legs straight. Move across the floor alternating walking hands and feet.
guachi is offline  
Likes For guachi:
Old 07-31-19, 05:36 PM
  #12  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by rosefarts View Post
I also do a dumbell bench press just because I think I should. At <140, I am not worried about getting too swole.

bradyweb is offline  
Old 07-31-19, 06:02 PM
  #13  
Lemond1985
Sophomore Member
 
Lemond1985's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 1,938
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1142 Post(s)
Liked 449 Times in 302 Posts
LOL, he's a "funny guy".

I have a thing where I get a set of #25 dumbbells, one in each hand hung to the side, and stand up as perfectly straight as I can. Once I've achieved that, I will do a set of 20. Then lean over and put the dumbbells on the ground in front of me, while still holding onto them. Do a 10 second or so hamstring stretch, then stand up again (never letting go of the dumbbells) and do a set of 20 and repeat the hamstring stretch. I do three sets and never let go of the weights, takes about 3-4 minutes total.

So I'm getting

1.) posture help
2.) arm, shoulder, and upper back strength training
3.) back and hamstring stretches

The curls really add power to my climbing. I can practically pull my way up hills for short distances, and the stretching helps flatten out my back. Plus it only takes like 3 minutes, well worth the time. And plus they keep my arms from getting too skinny.
Lemond1985 is offline  
Likes For Lemond1985:
Old 07-31-19, 07:51 PM
  #14  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
I'm going to be so incredibly ripped AND swole after I implement a little bit of everyone's exercises and stretches into my daily routine!
bradyweb is offline  
Old 07-31-19, 08:11 PM
  #15  
Lemond1985
Sophomore Member
 
Lemond1985's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 1,938
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1142 Post(s)
Liked 449 Times in 302 Posts
I tried the plank, it looked difficult, but it's really easy. My back popped the first time I did one, I was sold. Incredibly useful exercise for cyclists.

Twice a day seems plenty, though obviously if I worked in the porn industry, probably triple that.
Lemond1985 is offline  
Likes For Lemond1985:
Old 07-31-19, 08:39 PM
  #16  
guachi
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 134
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 58 Post(s)
Liked 36 Times in 29 Posts
I'm in the Navy and we have a semiannual fitness test. We can ride an exercise bike for the cardio portion (so I do). It's twelve minutes and the scoring is basically a W/kg test.

We also do two minutes of push ups and sit ups but next Spring we will trade out the sit ups for planks. It's a better test of core strength. So it's a win/win for me. I'd do it for biking and now I can do it for the Navy.
guachi is offline  
Likes For guachi:
Old 07-31-19, 09:15 PM
  #17  
Bmach
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 697
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 280 Post(s)
Liked 26 Times in 21 Posts
Donít forget the need to stretch after riding. I can hold various planks for 3+ min but if I donít stretch my back will remind me.
Bmach is offline  
Likes For Bmach:
Old 07-31-19, 09:46 PM
  #18  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by Bmach View Post
Donít forget the need to stretch after riding. I can hold various planks for 3+ min but if I donít stretch my back will remind me.
3 minute planks...that's great! Maybe I'm just a wuss but I hope I can build up to 2-3 at some point. My back would probably feel great!
bradyweb is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 06:01 AM
  #19  
berner
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Bristol, R. I.
Posts: 3,652

Bikes: Specialized Secteur, old Peugeot

Mentioned: 16 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 379 Post(s)
Liked 99 Times in 77 Posts
Getting Ripped and Swole sounds illegal. Gonna have to try it.
berner is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 06:10 AM
  #20  
jon c. 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Tallahassee, FL
Posts: 3,808
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1028 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 82 Times in 51 Posts
Originally Posted by Lemond1985 View Post
I tried the plank, it looked difficult, but it's really easy.
My reaction was the opposite. I thought "that looks easy", but after 15 seconds or so it became much more difficult to hold the position.
jon c. is offline  
Likes For jon c.:
Old 08-01-19, 06:16 AM
  #21  
FiftySix
I'm the anecdote.
 
FiftySix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: S.E. Texas
Posts: 991

Bikes: Norco CityGlide, Schwinn "Speedster" Willy

Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 515 Post(s)
Liked 316 Times in 238 Posts
43 years old and the back has troubles? Sounds reasonable.

The first time I threw out my back hard was at age 38, from years of lifting heavy things improperly at work. Nature of the job, unfortunately.

Now I'm 54, so 16 years of back and leg stretches daily. Plus, about 4 or 5 years ago I got a Teeter inverter, which I hang on upside down by the ankles when needed. It helps greatly with lower back pain and sciatica pain. I used it last night due to severe sciatica pain that wouldn't let me sleep. Worked like a charm and finally slept like a baby.

I have to admit, I've never tried the plank. Worth a try tonight or tomorrow. Thanks for bringing it up, @bradyweb.
FiftySix is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 06:41 AM
  #22  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by berner View Post
Getting Ripped and Swole sounds illegal. Gonna have to try it.
Lol!
bradyweb is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 06:44 AM
  #23  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by jon c. View Post
My reaction was the opposite. I thought "that looks easy", but after 15 seconds or so it became much more difficult to hold the position.
I think you are absolutely right. The basic position really does look simple and to the eye it looks like something you can hold for near as long as you wanted. Reality soon sets in if it's your first time and the burn is real. For something so simple, it's amazing the benefits you can get from it...even only dedicating 30-90 seconds a day to it.
bradyweb is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 06:47 AM
  #24  
wolfchild
Senior Member
 
wolfchild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mississauga/Toronto, Ontario canada
Posts: 5,751

Bikes: I have 3 singlespeed/fixed gear bikes

Mentioned: 21 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1479 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 143 Times in 89 Posts
IME one of the best tools for working your core/abs are kettlebells....The other thing that's also good is doing rotational exercises while standing ( eg. hitting a tire with a heavy sledge hammer)... Asymmetrical lifting is also very good. ..All these other exercises like sit-ups, crunches, planks and other nonsense is just a waste of time and energy.
wolfchild is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 06:50 AM
  #25  
bradyweb
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 87

Bikes: Bianchi Infinito CV Disc Ultegra | Fuji Sportif 1.5 - 2017 | Windsor Cyclo Cross Bike

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 40 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 12 Posts
Originally Posted by FiftySix View Post
Plus, about 4 or 5 years ago I got a Teeter inverter, which I hang on upside down by the ankles when needed. It helps greatly with lower back pain and sciatica pain. I used it last night due to severe sciatica pain that wouldn't let me sleep. Worked like a charm and finally slept like a baby. [/MENTION].
Because of my back issues I have always had a curiosity about those inversion tables and if they do any good. It seems to me, that type of stretch would feel amazing to my achy back. I may have to try one now!
bradyweb is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.