The side plank hip raise is an interesting exercise. It’s called a side plank because the trainer holds his or her body in a straight diagonal, supported by one arm. There are different ways to do this exercise; one of them includes the BOSU ball tool, a one-sided ball with a flat hard bottom and a rounded, inflated top. With the proper form and good attention to safety, this activity can build strength, poise, and overall body capacity for all of the other activities you do each day.
The Simple Side Plank Hip Raise
- Start by getting down onto the floor.
- Position your right arm underneath your upper body.
- Move so that your body is facing sideways.
- Stretch your legs out straight on the floor below you.
- Push up with your arm, supporting your upper body. Your body should be facing to the side, with your feet on the ground and your head and upper body raised up, propped on you extended right arm.
- In this straight-diagonal position, slowly push your hip up into the air.
- Release the hip and let it fall back to a straight diagonal.
- Repeat several times.
- Switch to the other side, supported by your left arm, and repeat.
This is a common side plank hip raise exercise.
Adding the BOSU Ball
Some trainers like to get an additional challenge by using the unstable surface of the BOSU ball. To do this, introduce the BOSU ball underneath your supporting arm, so that you need to balance your body against the round inflated surface. This adds a balance challenge to the activity, since your body needs to work harder to maintain the right form.
Avoiding Injury with the BOSU Side Plank Hip Raise
In these kinds of exercises, it’s important to make sure that your arms can handle the task of supporting your entire body weight. If this is not the case, you’ll be vulnerable to wrist and arm injuries, such as tendinitis, sprains, and more. Work up to these advanced exercises with some lower-resistance fixed weight or free weight exercises. Be especially careful with the BOSU ball and make sure you have a good beginning position so that your arm doesn’t slip off of the ball during the hip raise.
Muscles Worked with the Side Plank Hip Raise
The side plank hip raise works your arms, since you are supporting your whole body with one arm at a time, but this challenge also works your core muscles, especially when you’re using a BOSU ball. You can feel your trunk core muscles working to stabilize your body as you complete the hip raise in mid air in your diagonal side position.
Talk to your trainer about whether the side plank hip raise is an appropriate exercise for your skill level and fitness goals.