(MERCY HEALTH PARTNERS) - Bodyweight exercises can help you stay fit at home or when you are on vacation and have no equipment. I truly believe that bodyweight exercises are one of the best ways to workout, plus they have numerous benefits for a well-rounded program. Here are more of my favorite bodyweight exercises.
1. High Knees - This exercise is a typical running like move in which you lift your knees as high as you can. This exercise is excellent for working your core, thighs and lower back. Begin with feet flat on the floor. Lift your feet one at time bringing your knees as high up as possible. Perform the exercise for 20 to 60 seconds, start slow and add reps as you gain strength and stamina.
2. Stationary Lunges - Place one foot forward and the other back in a split wide stance. Lower your hips directly downward until your knee almost touches the ground, and return to the starting position. Do as many reps as possible then switch legs. Remember not to lean forward or allow your knee to go forward past your toes.
3. Staggered Push-Ups - In a typical push-up position, on your knees or toes, put your right hand forward about 6 to 8 inches while keeping your left hand directly under your left shoulder. Lower into the push-up, feeling the challenge more in the arm that is directly under your shoulder, allowing for increased strength development. Do as many reps as is comfortable and challenging, then switch hands repeating the exercise on the left side.
4. Wide Push-Ups - Get in your typical push-up position. Take your hands and widen them out as far as possible to where you still feel comfortable. Lower your body to the floor and then back up to the starting position. This exercise is a great way to really strengthen the pecs.
5. Plank Superman - Start in a basic plank position, with hips tucked, glutes contracted and back straight. While maintaining the plank, extend one arm out in front of you while at the same time raising the opposite leg off the floor. Return to the staring position and repeat the other side. Do as many reps as possible.
Keep challenging yourself and your body to get the results you desire.
Blair Moreau, Mercy Health Partners