How to do the Side Plank Leg Raise

The traditional plank gets an energetic new look with the Side Plank Leg Raise. The plank on it's own is a fantastic core exercise, by adding the leg raise you take this core exercise to a different level. 

Body weight exercises like planks are based on the concept that supporting your own weight will work your muscles as effectively as when you lift weights.

Many therapists use body weight exercises like planks, squats, and lunges in their rehab programs because they are effective and safe. 

Side Plank Leg Raise

  • Lie on your left side with your legs straight out and your right leg resting on your left one.

  • Prop your body up on your left elbow and forearm with the elbow directly under the shoulder.

  • Lift your hips off the floor as you raise your elbow off the floor, having your weight balanced on your left hand.

  • Extend your right arm and leg straight up in the air and hold the pose for 10-30 seconds.

  • Return to your starting position, turn around so you are on the other side and repeat the pose.

side plank leg raiseTaylor Demonstrating the Side Plank Leg Raise


  • The plank is an exercise routine used by many fitness professionals to measure the major core muscle strength of their students. A weak side plank can mean a weak core.

  • If you are not proficient at plank exercises it may be a good idea to master the traditional side plank before adding the arm and leg extension.

Key Benefits

  • Strengthens and tones the muscles in the glutes, hips, lower back, and abdominal muscles. Anytime you strengthen these supporting muscles of the back, you have a good chance of eliminating or reducing back pain. A stronger core also helps you maintain improved posture.
  • Body weight exercises like the plank can be done anywhere at any time - inside or outside; hotel room or living room. They are super convenient.

  • Balance is an area that tends to decrease as we get older. Supporting your own body weight requires engaging your core for stability, which will greatly improve your feel for balance.

  • Some recent studies have found that yoga poses like the plank can help patients with curved spines. On average, patients tested by Doctors at Columbia University had a 32% reduction in their primary spinal curve during the study.

Other pages that might interest you:

I will continue to share ideas about diet and exercise that have helped me along the way. If you have any questions I can help you with, or if you have any ideas you want to share, feel free to contact me or visit our Q&A forum.

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