- No gym,
- No weights,
- No equipment.
Can a decent workout be done? Absolutely. The number one excuse for not working out is a lack of time. I understand that, but the reality is you don’t need a lot of time to get a good workout at home in. You already have the only tool you will ever need to take yourself to peak health and fitness levels, your own body.
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Here are a few exercises to do at home without any equipment.
Do them with or without the couch. The couch just makes it a bit easier to get your glutes involved, which is really important when it comes to most lower body movements. Make sure to lead with your hips first, the tendency is to bend directly from your knees, but make the first move with your hips, let your knees follow. Once you get the hang of it this becomes a great warmup exercise.
This is another variation of the squat that will ensure you stretch out the fascia in the front of your body. The same technique points apply as in the squat, you should move first with your hips. However, this time we want to hold something overhead. In this picture you see me using a broomstick, but you can hold anything you want. If you want to progress, you can hold something heavy. If you want more information about the benefits of this exercise you can read more about Overhead Squats here.
Single Leg Squats
These are a tough exercise and a good progression from the squat. You can do them without support, or you can put a chair next to you and hold onto it. Again, be sure to lead from your hips first. These will be quite difficult for people at first, but it is important to persist. Go as deep as you can, you will find your strength and mobility increase and improve and you will become much more efficient with time.
Single Leg Stiff Leg Dead lifts
These will really get your hamstrings going, you don’t need to hold anything as it is tough eccentric work alone. If you want to progress you can hold a heavy book, ball or something of that size out in front of you. Be sure to go down slowly, bend your knee slightly at the start of the exercise but don’t bend it anymore as you are moving. All the movement should come from the hips. As soon as you feel a pull on your hamstring you know you have bent forward enough, slowly bring your body back upright.
This video also shows the exercise in motion.
This is a classic exercise with a little twist. Holding something overhead really stretches out your fascia and gives you an extra hip flexor stretch. Doesn’t matter what it is. Start with your feet together and step out into the lunge. Ensure that you step far enough so that your knee does not go in front of your toe, and to make sure you get good hip flexor stretches. I use a broom in this picture, but you can also hold a book or something light overhead.
Check out this video to see the exercise in motion.
These are pretty tough, a great alternative to lunges and also give you a stretch in your groin and adductors. Step out to the side and try to keep your toes pointing forward. Go as far down in the lunge as you can, if you feel any pain in the knee stop at that point. You will find as you get stronger you will be able to go further down into your side lunge as you progress.
You can also see this exercise in motion.
If you have a step to do this on it is better, if not no problem. Start with two legs and slowly lower your self. The count should be two beats down and one beat up. If two legs is to easy, move onto one leg. Although this is a very isolated exercise, I find it very important to help keep your knees healthy.
These are really good for your legs and your bum. Find a stable chair and you can get started. If the exercise is too easy find something heavy to hold to your chest or put a back pack on your back. Start doing these slowly and controlled on the way down.
This is one of my favourite exercises and will really build up your bum. You should start with two legs on the floor, press up through your heels until your body is straight. Once you have mastered the two leg version, you can try the one leg. The same principles apply, push through your heels to make sure you really engage your bum! If that becomes too easy, put your foot up on a chair or couch and really work those glutes!
Bit of a different one thrown in here, this is great for your butt. You can also hold onto a table. The important thing is that your hips hang off and your legs don’t touch the ground. Lift up using your hamstrings, glutes and lower back. This exercise is very effective for your posterior chain. Ensure that you lift up slowly.
I haven’t included any explosive/ jumping movements in this list, there are too many and that can be for another post. This is just purely strength work.
Pushups and Alternatives
There are so many alternatives to pushups that you can do at home. Check out this post on Pushups if you want more information about their benefits. You should keep your hands just slightly than shoulder width apart and ensure that your body is straight throughout the whole pushup.
- Normal Pushups
- T Pushups
- Pushups with weight/ backpack on
- Single arm Pushups
- Single arm wall pushups
- Clap Pushups (explosive)
- Incline Pushups (easier), you can also get on your knees as shown in the picture.
- Decline Pushups (Harder, with feet up on something)
Admittedly these look a little strange, but they work. If you are going to do pushups, you should do a set of these to balance out. If you have something you can lie under, such as a fence, two chairs with a broom stick across them or any surface or bar to pull up it is equally effective. These work your upper back.
This is a classic exercise that works your triceps. To progress put your feet up onto another chair.
There are many more upper body exercises to do at home, so make sure your sign up to the blog to receive your free ebook.
Abdominals, Activation, Core and Random Exercises
There is a massive amount of different ab exercises out there. There are a lot of situp variations that many of you are familiar with, I prefer you start working with prone holds to help save your lower back.
Prone Hold and Variations
In my opinion these are the ultimate ab exercise. Not only will you work your core and get rock hard abs, you will also save your back. being able to perform these for more than 2 minutes has been shown to decrease back pain considerably. If you want great abs, you should be including these. If you want to see more variations, check out this post on Prone Holds.
These are great for stability, a good addition to your workout without weights. You will activate your glutes, as well as help your core and abs in the push up position version. Make sure you do the movement slowly and hold at the top for a beat. Once you get a hang of the ones on the floor, you can progress to the version in the push up position.
Great for activating and strengthening your bum. Bend your leg to 90 degrees, and then push your heel to the roof. This will ensure you are squeezing your bum muscles, and will help to activate them. Your bum is really important in a lot of movements so you want to make sure it’s functioning properly.
This one is great for activating your bum and is a really good balance exercise. Try to hold for 30 seconds. You’ll feel your quad too. You can do this on or off the cushion, the cushion just makes it harder and adds extra stability work.
A great abdominal and core stability workout. Lay on the floor with your arms and legs up as shown in the picture. From here you need to drop your arm and leg on the same side. Make sure your leg doesn’t touch the floor. Bring them slowly back up and repeat.
I like this one. It’s almost a flexibility one but I can throw it in there because it is working stabilizers and upper body a little. Hence it comes under the random tag. Gets the hamstrings loose and well as hitting your shoulders and core as you move down into the pushup position.
Another one for activating your bum, as well as working on core stability. Alternate sides and hold for a second once your arm and leg are in the air. Make sure your body is straight.
Just remember you can always exercise at home without equipment and I hope this list opens your eyes to how easily you can get a full body workout. If you have any favourite home exercises without equipment that you do, leave a comment!
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