Who needs a stuffy gym when you can get a great workout anywhere?
Bodyweight exercises are a simple, effective way to improve balance, flexibility and strength without machinery or extra equipment. I’m a huge fan especially since I haven’t had a gym membership in over 4 years. I’m lucky enough to have access to weight equipment at work but I supplement with bodyweight exercises just because they are fun and quick. Now that’s always marvelous.
Exercise that you can pop out anywhere are perfect when you are short on time. Got 10 minutes before dinner is ready? Do a little circuit of planks, squats and dips. The “I don’t have time!” excuse is inexcusable!
Here’s 10 exercises that you can do anywhere, any time.
1. Inchworm: Stand up tall with the legs straight, fingertips touch the floor. Keeping the legs straight (but not locked!), slowly lower the torso toward the floor, and then walk the hands forward. Once in a push-up position, start taking tiny steps so the feet meet the hands. Continue for 8-10 reps.
2. Mountain Climber: Starting on your hands and knees, bring the left foot forward directly under the chest while straightening the right leg. Keeping the hands on the ground and core tight, jump and switch legs. The left leg should now be extended behind the body with the right knee forward.
3. Plank-to-Push-Up: Starting in a plank position, place down one hand at a time to lift up into a push-up position, with the back straight and the core engaged. Then move one arm at a time back into the plank position (forearms on the ground). Repeat, alternating the arm that makes the first move.
4. Burpees: Start out in a low squat position with hands on the floor. Next, jump the feet back to a push-up position, complete one push-up, then immediately return the feet to the squat position. Leap up as high as possible before squatting and moving back into the push-up portion of the show.
5. Single Leg Deadlift: Start in a standing position with the feet together. Lift the right leg slightly, and lower the arms and torso while raising the right leg behind the body. Keep the left knee slightly bent and reach the arms as close to the floor as possible. Raise the torso while lowering the right leg. Switch legs.
6. Wall Sit: Slowly slide your back down a wall until the thighs are parallel to the ground. Make sure the knees are directly above the ankles and keep the back straight. Go for 60 seconds per set (or however long it takes to feel the quake and shake).
7. Dolphin Push-Up: Start out in dolphin pose (down-dog with elbows on the floor). Lean forward, moving until the head is over the hands. Push up through the arms and return to the starting position.
8. Triceps Dip: Sit on the edge of a step or bench. Grab the edge of the elevated surface and straighten the arms. Bend them to a 90-degree angle, and straighten again while the heels push towards the floor. To make it a little harder, lift one leg off the ground.
9. Bridge: Lie on your back with the knees bent and feet hip-width apart. Place arms at your side and lift up the spine and hips. Only the head, feet, arms, and shoulders should be on the ground. Then lift one leg upwards, keeping the core tight. Slowly bring the leg back down, then lift back up. Try to do 10 reps per leg, then bring the knee in place and spine back on the floor.
10. Side Plank: Roll to the side and come up on one foot and elbow. Make sure the hips are lifted and the core is engaged, and hang tight for 30-60 seconds.
If you are looking for more bodyweight workouts, I’ve got you covered:
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What are your favorite bodyweight exercises?