Overwhelmed by the sheer amount of home workouts coming at you from every social media platform and gym? We are too, which is why we liked this list of five exercises from Abhinav Malhotra, Fitness First elite master trainer, that anyone can do at home, any time. With these simple body weight exercises, you can build muscle and enhance your strength while improving balance and flexibility.
Warming up is the most important part of any workout routine. No matter how tempting it is to directly dive in, try to spend a couple of minutes warming up to increase your heart rate and release any muscle tension. The most important reason for warming up is to prevent any acute injuries. Begin with on-the-spot exercises such as jogging and jumping jacks, for 30 seconds each.
Now that you are all warmed up, it’s time to plank. Planking is one of the most effective ways to strengthen your entire body all at once. Planking is a form of isometric exercise that works by holding one position until you can no longer keep your body in proper alignment and you start to feel your muscles burn. Start by making sure that your shoulders are away from your ears and your heels are aligned over the balls of your feet. The right way to plank is by pushing up with your elbows under your shoulders and squeezing your abs while keeping a straight back and contracting your glutes and quads.
Wall squats are perfect when it comes to strengthening your glutes, quads and hamstrings. This exercise requires you to hold a seated position for up to 60 seconds against a vertical surface. If you like a bit of a challenge, then try extending one leg and shifting your body weight on the other leg. Do this with alternate legs. This exercise will increase your muscular endurance while burning a lot of calories.
Are you ready for a full-body workout? Burpees may look simple and straight-forward from afar, but try doing a burpee for 30 seconds and you’ll soon find out how powerful this exercise is. Burpees work a wide range of muscles, boosting your cardiovascular fitness while improving strength and mobility. There are two steps to a classic burpee: a pushup followed by a leap in the air or, if you are up for a challenge, try throwing in a couple more press-ups to ramp up the difficulty.
This is another great exercise to work your glutes, hamstrings and quads. The secret to doing lunges correctly is control. Step one leg forward and bend your knee to a 90-degree angle by lowering your hip. Make sure your knees and ankles are aligned (don’t overbend the knee so that it is further forward than your foot). Gently lower your back knee without touching the ground and then press the heels of your forward foot to the ground and walk forward stepping into a lunge. With three sets of 20, your thighs will feel the workout.
Mountain climbers, which involve bringing the knees alternately into the chest while in a plank position, work your upper and lower body. Not only does this exercise get your blood pumping and burn calories but it also improves hip joint mobility and core stability. Ideally, you should try to complete at least three sets of 15-20 reps. Alternatively, you can swap between walking lunges and mountain climbers for three sets, a set of mountain climbers and then a set of lunges.