WRITER: Giancarla Aritao ● PHOTOS: Lawrence Aritao  ● MODEL: Theod Rehnzo Custodio ● PROGRAM COACHES: Rica Rodriguez and Divine Masinsin of Dynamic Duo Inc. ● Shot on location at Fitness Army BGC

Seafarers need to keep strong yet flexible in order to move properly so you can perform your work well. Movement is important to keep the ankles, hips, and spine—the key body parts for daily motion–healthy. Doing the same actions over and over will cause tightness in the body, so you need to add a variety of motion to your daily routine.  

This may sometimes be difficult to do given limited space and time on board your ship. That’s why this do-anywhere exercise is perfect, whether at sea or on shore. It does not require any special equipment (you can use a mat for comfort), and takes less than five minutes. 

This exercise, designed by Rica Rodriguez and Divine Masinsin of Dynamic Duo Inc., is a modified plank workout. It helps give mobility to your body, at the same time strength and stability, by working your core.  The added movement from the modification also increases your heart rate to build up endurance.

Start with a Full Plank 

  1. Get down on the floor with your feet shoulder-width apart. Your wrists should be under your shoulders.
  2. Support your weight using your arms, with your fingers pointed forward. Your feet should be on tiptoes.
  3. Lengthen your body so that it feels like your head and feet are being extended in opposite directions.
  4. Keep your muscles tight and keep your back straight. You should feel your abs and butt working.
  5. Relax your neck by looking at the floor a few inches above your hands. 

Lean Back to an Animal Squat  

  1. Move your body back by bending your knees.
  2. Your hands and feet should stay in the same shoulder-width position. Maintain your balance by keeping your feet steady and pushing your hands down on the floor.
  3. Make sure that you do not let your shoulders sag and keep your abdominal muscles tight. You should also feel a burn in your thighs.
  1. Return to a full plank position by extending your legs and locking the knees.
  2. Repeat about four times for beginners. As you get fitter, start increasing the number of reps and doing several sets. Make sure to take a break between each set.
Giancarla Aritao

Giancarla Aritao is wife to Lawrence and mom to Hannah, 7, and Rafael, 4. She’s a homeschooler and a writer.