I was advised a few core exercises by my physical therapist to improve my postuer after a lumbago, among them the plank. As was explained to me in this answer, I should train until I hold about 60s in one go and then add variety to increase intensity. The alternative would be to keep working on longer holding times.
I bore easily, so I will probably prefer the first option (once I get there). But what is actually better for me and my posture.

p.s. I'm asking here and not the professional because the question only occured to me now, and I don't see the guy anymore.

  • My two cents, if your posture needs professional help, you should have a professional teach you and observe you doing plank variations or you're likely going to do it poorly and just reinforce bad shoulder position and spine position habits. (A good pilates instructor can teach you this a lot cheaper than a PT appointment)
    – Affe
    Commented Jan 9, 2014 at 18:01

1 Answer 1


The goal of doing plank to improve your posture, is to strengthen your core. To do this, the variation for increased intensity will net you better results, as the increased duration will lead to diminishing returns. In short, after achieving the 60s hold, your body is sufficiently used to the move, that it doesn't force as much adaptation as it did while you were training up to the 60s, even at greater duration.

  • That is good piece of information. Can you please provide any supporting link on this?
    – Freakyuser
    Commented Jan 10, 2014 at 15:26
  • 1
    link Here's a link to a short article by Mark Rippetoe. This describes in general terms the diminishing returns in training. His article is more to the point of a general training routine, but is applicable in training a particular movement or muscle group. In this case they're training their core muscles, and after adapting to the plank hold, the action becomes an exercise in muscular endurance rather than strength. Adaptation (strength gain) comes from challenging the muscles to do something they're unfamiliar with.
    – Thew
    Commented Jan 10, 2014 at 21:46

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