Have you tried out planking?

“Be creative. Plank in ways that have not been done before.” (source)

I have come across the term  planking a few times during the last days, even in the news they mentioned it. So I am wondering wha

t exactly planking is and how come there is such hype about it.

In the internet you can find lots of blogs where people show their newest planking photos, and if you only look for photos, you’ll find thousands of them. Planking really has become an internet meme.

On the blog Plankinglol.com I found a definition of planking:

“Planking is the intricate art of lying face-down in a plank position […] in unusual public spaces, judged by the level of difficulty, creativity, location and technique involved in the plank.”

That does not seem to be so difficult; however, on the official Facebook page there are some rules that have to be fulfilled to officially call it a planking photo.                                   First, you have to lie face down and remain expressionless during the plank. Your arms need to be at your side and arms and feet straight, fingers and toes pointed. Furthermore, you must make it known that it is a plank, and you always should consider your safety as first priority. Finally, every plank needs to be named. On Dangerous trend: Plank crazy I also found that the whole objects that is being planked has to be in the photo and of course, Photoshop is not allowed.

All that does not sound so spectacular yet planking arouses such high awareness.

To get a full picture of the new “extreme sport”, check out this video I found on http://www.plankingfun.com/

According to a post on Viralswagger, this gaze began several years ago as the Lying Down game, invented by Gary Clarkson and Christian Langdon from England.

However, it did take some time till it caused a stir. In March 2011, the professional rugby player David Williams planked during a game held in Australia on March, 27th. Now it is considered to be the new internet meme, especially in Australia where it quickly found many fans, but also in Germany there are more and more supporters.

Very famous among the plankers are the Pujie Girls, see here, two girls from Taiwan that have almost 100 000 followers on Facebook.

In England, some doctors and nurse have been suspended after publishing photos that showed them planking in a hospital in Swindon during a night shift.

A very tragic incident happened in Brisbane, Australia. Acton Bale, 20, died while trying to plank on a balcony on the seventh floor.

The news of the death however did not discourage people to continue with planking, on the contrary, there are always more young people putting their latest plank photo online.

So, as they say on Facebook: “You got a body, you got a Plank.” (source).                         But is it worth for just a good photo on Facebook?

To see more photos, go to http://www.plankingphotos.com/?p=947 or http://plankinglol.com/2011/05/caution-planking-vehicles-can-be-addictive-just-ask-this-girl/

Other references: http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/planking

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2 Responses to Have you tried out planking?

  1. Nadja K. says:

    Hey Karenge,
    I was really attracted by your headline. I heard about planking a few weeks ago when I went through a couple of photographs on my friends Facebook page. Honestly, I was quite entertained but also confused about what they were doing. Only one week later I got the answer on the newspaper: It was about the tragic accident in Brisbane and the boy that died! How stupid I thought. Do you know what other people think about this? I really would like to know the purpose of pushing oneself to riskier and higher places. Maybe you can give a closer insight of other opinions at your next posts 🙂 Here is what I found – an article discussing whether government should intervene this rather senseless but dangerous trend.
    So what do you think? Thanks for this article. It is surely worth a discussion.


  2. SparklinGesine says:

    hi karenge,

    no, I haven’t tried out planking 🙂 have you?
    I really like your post because planking is a topic people talk about in these days especially after the death of a planker in Australia. It might started as a funny thing but if people get too motivated by finding a new extraordinary place to plank they get careless and that’s where accidents start.
    Nevertheless, it is amazing that planking goes through the generations (and I really had to laugh about the plank in the news studio!).
    But I don’t think that risking your life for a picture on facebook is an acceptable compromise. Everything has its limits.

    I would love to know more about planking in Germany. Did accidents occure here, as well?

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