Planking all about fun, laughs

Published 1:57 pm Monday, July 18, 2011

Jason Bauchman planks. (Contributed)

By BRAD GASKINS / Staff Writer

ALABASTER – It’s called planking. The rules are simple.

Lay face down, hands to the side, in an unusual place, preferably in public. Take photos of the planking. Share photos with friends.

That’s it.

“There’s a lot of people that say they don’t understand what planking is,” Vickie Culver said. “Don’t knock it until you try it. All you do is lay down.”

Vickie Culver planks. (Contributed)

Culver started planking a few weeks ago, after a fellow member at Alabaster’s Kingwood Church introduced her to the internet craze.

While public places are popular planking destinations, most of Culver’s planks have been around her house:  in a truck bed in the garage, the edge of the porch, in the living room and on the bed.

Funny stuff.

Scott Burke planks. (Contributed)

“People just laugh,” Culver said of reactions to the facebook photos of her planks

The photos are posted on the facebook page of the Kingwood Plankers, a group of church members who enjoy planking.

Church member Scott Burke created the Kingwood Plankers a few weeks ago after reading about planking on the internet.

Candy Bauchman planks. (Contributed)

“I know it’s silly,” said Burke, 33. “ I know it’s dumb. I know it’s going to be a fad that disappears.”

But until it does, Burke and the others are making the most of it, and laughing about it all.

“When I first saw it, I thought ‘what is this. I don’t understand,’” Burke said. “I thought it was funny.”

Mason and Brayden Ramm plank. (Contributed)

He said he was at a cookout trying to explain what planking is to a group of friends that just didn’t understand.

“So I got up on the counter and did it,” Burke said. “Somebody took my picture, and it ended up on facebook.”

Other people at the cookout started doing it, and the photos made their way around the church.

Tim Stewart planks. (Contributed)

Once Burke started planking, he said he began to see everywhere as a potential planking location.

“Everywhere you go you’re analyzing and thinking ‘can I fit in that place?’ Will this support my weight?’” Burke said.

At Kingwood, Burke said everybody from ages 2 up to some in their 60s are getting in on the planking.

Andrew Arrington and Scott Burke plank. (Contributed)

“It’s something fun,” Burke said. “It’s not hurting anybody. I know there are stories about people that have fallen off building and things like that.”

In May, an Australian man fell seven stories to his death while attempting to plank on the railing of his apartment complex, according to the Brisbane Times.

Burke said he has no control of where people plank, but say he always encourages people to be safe and not take unnecessary risks.

“In order for it to be an official plank, you have to lay flat, face down with your hands to your side for at least five seconds,” Burke said. “The most important part is taking the picture and laughing your face off. It really is very, very humorous.”