Gigi Hadid is obviously in shape. The top model displays her physique and physical prowess frequently in the public eye and few of her fans seem to complain. Still, despite the fact she’s worth $13 million and has nearly 32 million people following her on Instagram, that doesn’t mean she can’t flounder with some exercise moves like the rest of us.
In the midst of doing an interview stunt for Reebok, Hadid helps highlight some common foibles when it comes to the popular plank exercise.
The one-minute-plus interview with accompanying plank shows off a few things that are important to consider when doing this exercise. First and foremost is focus. “When you’re talking and not paying attention, or getting tired,” says certified personal trainer Louie Antonio Antuna, who specializes in behavioral and fitness training, “the body seeks the least path of resistance. That’s just human instinct.”
As you can see about 10 seconds into the clip, Hadid’s rear starts going up in the air, a pretty clear sign of fatigue, and it happens throughout. “Arching up shows you’re tired,” Antuna observes. “It’s the way to rest when in a plank.” Even though the video may be just over a minute, it’s likely she’d been in the plank position for longer than that. Add to that a few dips to the side and a few seconds of sagging hips, and you have prime examples of things you really shouldn’t do in a plank.
So, maybe now you’re intrigued about taking on this move due to Hadid’s display, or you’ve been curious about it since hearing about all those plank challenges of recent years. There are a few other things to keep in mind with this exercise that has gained popularity due to its apparent efficiency and focus on the abs area. “It’s popular and it’s overused,” says Antuna. “But it’s not going to get you abs.“
It may not get you a defined six-pack, and there are a few scary stories out in the wilds of the Internet about people who have been injured doing planks — including a woman who reportedly developed an injury called costochondritis. Despite that, planks may be pretty good for folks who are hoping to get in shape. “They’re safe because there’s not a lot of movement in the hips or spine,” Antuna explains. “More than anything, the plank will get you to understand how to work your core,“ he says, and then goes on to offer a few do’s and don’ts.
Do: Squeeze your glutes while you do this exercise. “It’s not a lower back exercise. You want to feel it in your midsection and abdomen,“ says Antuna. If you feel it in your lower back, shoulders, or arms, you’re doing it wrong.
Don’t: Do planks, like a lot of other exercise, if you have a heart condition.
Don’t: Worry if, like Hadid, your butt goes up in the air after a while, especially if you’ve been doing it for a long stretch. “Any exercise that you’re doing over a long time, you’re going to try to find rest,” says Antuna. “It’s not right or wrong, but just be sure to get back into the proper form.”
Don’t: Expect rock-hard, six-pack abs, regardless of whether you can do 2-, 5-, or even 10-minute planks. “The longer you hold a plank, doesn’t lead to more aesthetically pleasing abs,” Antuna explains.
If the plank is now on your list of Hadid-endorsed things to do, along with boxing, perhaps, follow these tips and you’ll probably have a good chance of keeping your form tight.
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