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Man with chronic pain holds a plank for 9.5 hours, smashing world record

"I was so grateful for the opportunity to show the world that the pain, sweat, the tears and the years of dealing with CRPS, won’t stop you from achieving your dreams."



Daniel Scali beat the Guinness World Record for the longest abdominal plank hold. (Daniel Scali via SWNS)

By Fiona Jackson via SWNS

A man has smashed the Guinness World Record for longest abdominal plank hold - holding it for nine-and-a-half hours.

Daniel Scali, 28, admits he vomited during the attempt due to the amount of pain he endured and had to meditate to keep himself focused.

To make his achievement even more impressive, he has suffered from complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) since he was 12-years-old.

Scali, from Adelaide, Australia, uses fitness as a means to cope with his chronic pain and wants to use his record to draw more attention to invisible disabilities.

"After my body got in the rhythm of the plank, my arm would intermittently shoot a pain up to my neck," he said.

"This was extremely hard to deal with as I wanted to raise my arm to deflect the pain, so I had to really concentrate on not to break the plank.

"Knowing that I went the longest I ever went, knowing I pushed the hardest and gave it my all, was so worth it."

When he was 12-years-old, Scali fell off a trampoline and broke his left arm. Even after the bone healed, the boy suffered with waves of intense pain.

He was shortly after diagnosed with CRPS, which is where the brain sends incorrect messages to an injured area, causing greater pain than would be expected of the injury.

Daniel Scali during nerve block after first attempt. (Daniel Scali via SWNS)

"Picture stubbing your toe on a door and straight away you will jump and feel that terrible dull, shooting pain," he said.

"Your brain sends pain messages to the affected areas to make you aware you have hurt your toe.

"Whereas those with CRPS feel this pain constantly, personally I can experience pain from simply typing on my laptop or putting on my armband.

"Having a shower can be difficult as if my arm comes into contact with water it feels like razor blades piercing my skin."

While there is currently no cure for CRPS, Scali uses nerve blockers, physio, and exercise to mask some of the pain.

His first plank hold in November 2020 was a respectable two minutes in length, but "felt like a lifetime."

"I remember thinking how much of a physical and mental battle that exercise was for me," he said.

"This inspired me to want to try to push myself further and show other chronic pain sufferers that you can keep pushing through what you’re battling."

He started training for his world record in January and began focusing on upper-body and core exercises at the gym.

Scali, who owns an automotive business, would plank for on average four-and-a-half hours a night.

He said: "There wouldn’t be a night that I missed it.

"This was planking straight without stopping, if I did stop or lift my arm, I would have to restart the timer - and yes this did happen on a number of occasions!"

He also sought help from a mind coach who taught him meditation and how to remain focused throughout these long periods of time.

He attempted his record-breaking hold, witnessed by adjudicators from Guinness, on August 6.

To get himself in the correct mental state, he didn't watch anything for the first two hours.

After that, he watched TV shows on his phone.

Daniel Scali attempting to break the plank record. (Daniel Scali via SWNS)

"If you ask me now what episode I was watching and what happened I wouldn’t be able to tell you though," he said.

After seven hours, the pain became so intense that Scali had to vomit, but he remained strong in his plank position.

His partner Carla Dubbioso, friends, and family cheered him on past the previous record of 8 hours, 15 minutes, and 15 seconds, set by George Hood, 62.

He said: "I felt an overwhelming sense of accomplishment.

"I can still hear the words 'you just hit the record Daniel' from my coach.

"Every second after eight hours honestly felt forever. It really took the most out of me."

When it came to the end, getting his limbs moving again was the hardest part, and he slowly brought himself onto his knees rather than collapsing.

Daniel Scali holding record. (Daniel Scali via SWNS)

His final time was 9 hours, 30 minutes and 1 second, earning him the Guinness World Record for the longest time in the abdominal plank position (male).

He hopes his achievement can bring more attention to sufferers with CRPS, and invisible disabilities.

He said: "Raising awareness for CRPS and chronic pain suffers was one of my main objectives that inspired me to plank.

"It ticked the mental and physical challenges that we face each day.

"I was so grateful for the opportunity to show the world that the pain, sweat, the tears, and the years of dealing with CRPS, won’t stop you from achieving your dreams."

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