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15 Must Try Plank Variations for a Stronger Core

Updated: Nov 20, 2023

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No matter where you are, you can challenge your core in some pretty amazing ways with your bodyweight alone! A key to building intrinsic core stabilization and strength is training in an environment of instability. The more instability you can progressively increase, the more adaptation the intrinsic core muscles will undergo as they are working to return to a more stable environment.

For example, a standard plank is producing a moderate level of instability as the core needs to be engaged (contracted) to hold the body up until the knees come down to release the core muscles.

A step up from this may be raising 1 or 2 limbs while in that plank, creating an even greater environment of instability where the core is now working harder to stabilize to keep from falling over.

Here are 15 core exercises to challenge the intrinsic core muscles that support balance, coordination and stabilization of the entire body. Remember, it’s not always about the 6 pack. You’re better off not having an obvious 6 pack and having tremendous balance, core strength and coordination than having a 6 pack on the outside with nothing to show for when it comes to actual core strength. Always work from the inside out & the aesthetics will come naturally!

Before jumping into these exercises, reminder to always progress slowly to avoid injury or improper movement patterns. Performing these exercises under the guidance of a certified fitness professional is always recommended.

1. Quadruped + Quadruped Progressions

Below is the Quadruped hold (beginner); for the 5 additional exercise progressions check out this playlist on the Milsner Fitness YouTube channel.

Once you master the Quadruped, challenge yourself to some of these quadruped progressions!


2. Open + Close Plank


3. Wide Mountain Climbers


4. Plank Hip Dips


5. Toe Tap Walkouts


6. Star Plank


7. Plank Reaches


8. Body Saw


9. Plank Pull Through


10. Plank Commandos/Full Plank to Elbow Plank (from toes & knees)

From Knees


11. Twisting Side Plank

For more plank variations and progressions and to access all of these videos in one place, save this playlist from the Milsner Fitness YouTube channel!

Have fun building your inner core strength & challenging your core stability with these 15 plank variations! No matter where you are: the gym, your living room, or the beach on a vacation, you can do any of these core exercises.

Comment below on which your favorites are directly on this blog post & feel free to message me on Instagram with any questions you may have on how to best integrate these into your workout routine.

If you aren't already, be sure to subscribe to the MF YouTube channel where I am constantly adding new exercise tutorials to support you in challenging yourself in your workouts!



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