Are you new to bodyweight exercises and want to try a workout at home? Or perhaps you are experienced in this form of exercise but want some body weight workout ideas for when you can’t make it to the gym? Below we will talk you through 15 of the best exercises you need to include in your bodyweight workouts which require no extra equipment.
Bodyweight exercises are a strength training form of exercise where you use your own body weight and gravity to improve your fitness, build strength, and flexibility as well as bring a host of other benefits.
Before we get started with the actual bodyweight exercises, let’s take a quick look at why body weight workouts are so popular and effective.
What are the Benefits of Bodyweight Exercises?
- You don’t need any extra equipment. All you need to do is make sure you have enough space to move around and get started!
- Save time and make sure you get your daily exercise. If you have a busy schedule, sometimes it might be impossible for you to get to a gym at the start or end of the day. Doing some bodyweight training at home will make sure you continue to progress in your fitness journey.
- Progress at your own pace. You can start your bodyweight exercise training at home without having to worry about competing for equipment or how you may be performing against others in a gym environment.
- Bodyweight exercises are incredibly effective. A bodyweight workout will help to improve your aerobic ability, muscle endurance, core strength, and body power. You will also see improvements in balance, flexibility, and in your stamina levels.
- Work multiple muscles at once. Most exercises in your body weight workout won’t be concentrating on one area of your body. Whereas most gym equipment will allow you to concentrate on certain areas, your bodyweight workout will let you get great all-over exercise.
- You can build muscle mass effectively. Lifting weights isn’t the only way to build and improve your muscles while working out. Bodyweight exercises are a form of resistance training and will help you stimulate the muscles you are using to adapt, grow and strengthen.15 Best Body Weight Workout Exercises to Do at HomeHere are some of the best bodyweight exercises for you to incorporate into your routine. From simple press-ups to more involved exercises such as a handstand wall walk, there are plenty of ways for you to start doing bodyweight workouts at home today.Before you get into your first starting position, make sure you have taken the steps to ensure you limit the risks of accidents and injury. Remember:
- Make sure you are wearing suitable workout clothes and trainers.
- Do some warmups and stretches before jumping into any intensive exercises.
- Make sure you move pieces of furniture so that you have enough room to move around as you work out.
Don’t overdo it. If you are new to working out or bodyweight exercises, then make sure that you build up your routines progressively and don’t risk injury by pushing further than your should.
1. Press Ups
Starting with some simple press ups will help you to improve your upper-body strength and pushing power. These bodyweight exercises also help you in building up your endurance and muscle mass depending on push up volume and variations.
Here’s how to do press ups in your body weight workout:
- Get into starting position with your body in a straight line and your weight supported on your toes and hands supporting your upper body and positioned shoulder width apart.
- Keep your body core tight and locked to ensure there is a straight line running down from your head, along to your glutes, and towards your heels.
- Use your arms to lower your upper body toward the ground until your chest is around an inch from the floor.
- Use your arms to push up from the floor by fully extending your arms until you are back in your starting position.
2. Overhead Crunches
These bodyweight exercises will allow you to work on your abs and should help you to strengthen this area as long as you keep your core tight and engaged. You can also increase the challenge of the exercise by keeping your arms extended throughout the maneuver.
How to do Overhead Crunch bodyweight exercises:
- Get into the starting position by lying on your back so that there is a straight line along your entire body.
- Keep your feet shoulder width apart and flat on the floor whole bending your knees. Then keeping your arms straight line or elbows bent, use your abs to pull your shoulders and upper body from the floor.
3. Step Up and Knee Raises
These bodyweight exercises are an effective form of lower body strength training which will also help you to keep your core tight and improve balance. This type of exercise can be particularly effective if you find that one side of your body is stronger than the other and you want to right the imbalance.
How to do a Step Up and Knee Raise:
- Before you get into starting position, place a box or bench in front of you which is capable of supporting your body weight.
- Stand up straight ot get into starting position with your feet hip width apart and make sure you maintain a balanced posture throughout the move.
- Plant your foot forward onto the box or bench and then bring your remaining foot up with your knee bent. You should aim for this lift to be as high as you manage and use the power in your feet and leg to drive the movement.
- Lower your raised leg back towards the floor in a controlled and steady movement until you are back in your original standing position.
- With your feet flat on the ground, switch over and repeat the same movement on the other side.
4. Pistol Squat Position
This effective bodyweight training exercise will work several important areas such as your glutes, hamstrings, claves, hip abductors, and quads. As this exercise is also a unilateral movement, this squat position will also help you judge your balance and identify weaker muscles.
The more you do these exercises the more you’ll find your balance, stability, and mobility will improve.
How to do pistol squats:
- Get into the starting squat position by standing straight with your arms extended out in front of you.
- Raise your right leg forward and hold it out in front of you above the ground.
- Push your hips backward and down to lower your body towards the ground as far as you can. Improve your control and balance by engaging your core and moving steadily. You should keep your forward legs extended throughout this downward position.
- Once you have reached the lowest point you can, pause for a moment and then use your standing leg to push back up into a standing position. Move back to your starting position with both legs straight.
- Switch legs and do the same movement on the other side.
5. Arm Dips
If you want to develop your upper body strength and muscle size, then these bodyweight workouts are a great way to work out your triceps. Repeating these movements should soon have you feeling the burn in your shoulders, back, and chest as well as your arms.
When doing this exercise you need to make sure to keep your shoulders relaxed and avoid hunching them up to your ears.
How to do arm dips:
- Using either dip bars or a chair with arms at the right height, position yourself facing forwards in front of them with your arms in a straight line.
- Place your hands on either side of the bar of the chair arms to get into starting position.
- Slowly lower your body until your elbows are in a right-angle position. make sure your arms remain shoulder width apart and don’t flare outwards.
- Once you have reached as low as you can manage, lift yourself back up until your arms are straight and you are back in a standing position.
- Repeat the movement again and build up your reps depending on your strength and fitness level.
6. Star Planks
If you find that traditional ab burning exercises aren’t having the same effect that they used to, then including exercises such as star planks can help you to work your core in more challenging ways.
To get these bodyweight exercises right, you need to make sure to keep your glutes and abs tight throughout the movement and keep your hips balanced throughout the exercise.
How to do star planks:
- Head down to the floor as if you are going into a push up position.
- From this starting position, walk your hands and feet outwards gradually until your body is in an X-shape.
- Keep your core tight and keep a flat straight line down your body.
- Hold the position to feel the burn and then walk your hands and feet back to the push up position.
7. Groiner Exercises
These exercises will help to improve your range of movement, open up your hips and increase the length that your muscles can extend during various exercises. Doing these at the start of your bodyweight workouts is a great way to get your hips and thoracic region ready for the exercises to follow.
How to do Groiners:
- Begin by putting yourself in a push up position.
- Keep your arms straight. Use the power in your legs to jump them forward so that your feet and as close to your stationary hand position as possible.
- Make sure you maintain your balance and then use your legs to jump back so that you are back in your original starting position.
8. Sit Up Bodyweight exercises
These classic body weight training exercises will help you to build your core control and stability. Rather than aiming for doing as many sit ups as quickly as possible, you should concentrate on engaging your abs and core strength to lift your upper body. Pulling up through your arms will lessen the effectiveness and could end up causing pain in your neck and shoulders.
As with all of the exercises detailed in this article, you should concentrate on getting the positioning right and making sure your muscles are engaged. Only then will your body weight workout be as effective as possible.
How to do a Sit Up:
- Lie with your back flat on the floor with your knees bent.
- Move your hands so they are placed behind your head.
- Tense your core muscles and use them to pull your torso up until your upper body and thighs form a V-shape.
- Lower your body steadily while maintaining core control until you are back in your starting position.
9. Spider Crawl Exercises
This bodyweight exercise is great for your core muscles while also working out your chest, shoulders, arms, and legs. This makes it a fantastic exercise to include when you are looking for an all-over workout method.
If you want to improve several parts of your body at once and keep your routine as benefit-efficient as possible, you should make sure to include these in your next session.
How to do Spider Crawls
- Get into a push up position with your arms shoulder width apart and feet hip width apart.
- From this starting position raise either your right or left leg up off the ground and bend your knee so that it moves up towards your elbow.
- During the movement, remember to crunch your core muscles to help you maintain your balance and bring your knee as close as you can to your arms.
- Pause in this position and then steadily move your leg back to your starting pose and repeat the movement with the other leg.
- Make sure that you maintain your balance and don’t rush the movement. Concentrate on using your abs to get the best results from repeating this exercise.
10. Crab Walk Exercises
These effective body weight exercises will work a variety of muscles in your body, such as your shoulders, quads, and hamstrings. And after a couple of repetitions, you should soon start to feel the burn!
During the movement, you should concentrate on keeping your back in a straight line and your hips raised well off the ground. This will help to ensure that your core is also getting a good workout.
Don’t rush through the exercise, instead make sure that you are moving steadily and that your arms and legs are moving with coordinated speed and positioning.
How to do crab Walks
- Sit on the floor with your legs extended out in front of you and your hands planted behind your back shoulder width apart.
- Then, with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor, begin to raise your hips upwards so that your torso and legs no longer meet the floor.
- With your torso raised above the floor, keep your knees bent and start walking your hands and feet forward across the ground.
- Lower your body steadily back to the floor to end the exercise.
11. A Standing Long Jump
Use these exercises to work on your strength and lower body mass. This movement requires you to bring some serious power to your workouts and helps you build up your muscles with every jump!
These jumps will work out your hip flexors, glutes, calves, hamstrings, and quadriceps. You should also feel a burn in your abs as you pull your legs up and push them forward.
How to do a standing long jump
- Move into a squat position with your knees bent and feet shoulder width apart.
- Keep your arms straight and swing them down and back beside your body to push your body forward as you jump.
- At the same time, push your legs forward to jump straight ahead as far as you can.
- Aim to land on the soles of your feet and with your knees slightly bent. Your arms can help you to maintain your balance throughout the jump and when you land.
- Push up with your feet flat so your legs are straight and you are in a standing position.
12. Superman Exercises
If you want a home strength training exercise that will help to strengthen your back – then superman exercises are a no-brainer. This movement works the erector muscles along your spine while engaging your core and glutes throughout.
To make sure that you get the most out of this workout, you should make sure that you keep all the active muscles engaged throughout the exercise.
How to do Superman Exercises
- Lay down on the floor with your arms extended in front of you and your legs straight.
- With your face down towards the floor raise your arms and upper chest a few inches off the floor.
- At the same time lift your straight legs up in a controlled movement.
- When you have lifted your legs and arms up, hold the pose for a few moments.
- Then squeeze your lower back and lower your limbs so that you are in your starting pose.
This is another great body weight exercise that will work different parts of your body at once and throw in an effective calorie burn at the same time. The movement requires a lot of energy and strength to complete, but make sure that you maintain your control and balance throughout – no matter how much it burns!
How to do burpee exercises
- Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and then squat with your knees bent until your thighs are parallel to the floor.
- Once you are in the lower squat position, put your hands on the floor and use them to balance as you kick so that you land with your legs extended behind you.
- You should be in a push up position at the end of the movement. Push up until your arms are extended in a straight line and then tuck your legs back in so you are back in the bottom of your squat position.
- Keep your feet flat on the ground and then push up off the floor into a jump of about six inches from the ground.
- Repeat the movements in the cycle over again.
These bodyweight exercises don’t just work out your glutes. You’ll also be exercising your hips and hamstrings throughout the movement. To get the most out of the workout, make sure to contract your glutes when you reach the top of the movement and when holding the pose at the top of the exercise.
How to do Glute kickbacks
- Start in a kneeling position with your arms placed as though you are going to do a press up.
- Then steadily move your right or left leg forwards until your hamstring is lined with your back.
- During the movement, make sure to contract your glutes and keep the stretch extended for one second before moving your leg backward again.
- Slowly move your legs backwards to the original starting position and then repeat the movement with your other leg.
15. Handstand Wall Walk Exercise
This body weight exercise gives you a great all over workout which helps you to improve your strength, flexibility, and mobility. As you complete the exercise you will be using your shoulder muscles, your triceps, your lats, traps, glutes, and abs to support your weight and stay in position as you lower yourself down the wall.
How to do a handstand wall walk:
- Begin by doing a handstand and place your feet flat against the wall.
- Then slowly begin to walk both your hands forward and lower your body down the wall.
- Continue the movement until your body is lowered so that your feet meet the floor.
- Stand up so that you are standing straight with your arms down beside you.
Conclusion – 15 Best Body Weight Workout Exercises to Do At Home
If you want a break from your normal gym exercises or don’t have the time to exercise outside of home, then a body weight workout is perfect! Not only will you get a great all over body workout, you’ll also be able to get started right away with no special equipment required!
Whether you want to improve your core stability, build muscle mass, work on your abs, or increase the strength of your legs – body weight exercises will help you to get there.
Whether you are a beginner to exercising or looking to include some variation in your workouts, learning how to do these effective exercises at home will help you to improve your fitness and reach your health goals.
For more information about functional fitness, one on one personal training, and local performance training classes, contact New U Performance now. We have a host of programs that will help you to reach your goals whether you are a beginner or looking to level up on your current strength training routine.
Is a bodyweight workout effective?
No matter your current fitness level, you will find that bodyweight exercises are incredibly effective. Whether you are an experienced lifter or a total beginner, you’ll find that you can effectively target muscles as well as get a terrific all over workout that exercises several muscle groups at once.
Is bodyweight training better than lifting weights?
Many weight lifters skip bodyweight exercises believing that they aren’t as effective as traditional weight training. And if you are looking for optimal mass gain, then you might find that weight training is quicker.
However, bodyweight exercises can help you to build muscles and improve fitness while becoming more flexible and healthy with less risk of injury.
The good news for those looking to improve their fitness is that you don;th