Best Home Workout Exercises

Sometimes it’s just not possible to make it to a gym. In many cases this is when people fall out of their workout routine because they think there’s no way they can replicate the same level of workout.

Whilst you may not be able to fully substitute lifts like deadlifts etc. You can still target all of your core muscle groups with these exercises which you can do from the comfort of your own home! Most of these exercises require no equipment however I’ll add in a small list below of equipment you may want to invest in to get the most out of your home workout:

  • Yoga Mat
  • Ab Roller
  • Pull Up Bar
  • Resistance Bands
  • Dumbbells

We’ll separate each exercise into the core muscle groups and let you know what standard gym exercise it will replicate.

Chest

Push-ups

Replaces: Bench Press

Not sure I really have to explain this one. The humble push-up is incredibly effective at building your chest muscles but you’ll also get activation in your shoulders and triceps. The key thing here is to focus on your form. Keep your hands shoulder width apart, bend your elbows to lower yourself to the ground. Make sure to lower yourself until your nose touches the ground to get the effect of a full rep, remember it’s better to do less with good form than more with poor form. If you’re not ready to dive straight into standard push-ups try starting off with your knees on the ground.

Resistance Band Chest Flys

Replaces: Cable Flys

Fix your resistance bands to a closed door or a heavy fixed object. Keep your chest out and your core tight. Make sure your to not let your arms and shoulders go too far back in order to minimise risk of injury. Bring your arms forward from their wide position to meet in the middle like a fly you would do in a gym. Obviously without the same weight resistance you’ll want to increase the number of reps you’re performing in order to obtain optimal muscle stimulation.

Arms

Bodyweight Tricep Dip

Replaces: Tricep Pulldown, Skullcrusher

Place your arms on an elevated flat surface, like a chair or sofa with your feet on the floor. Lower your body so that your tricep is at an 90° angle to your elbow and push yourself back up so that your arms are straight. Make sure not to go too far beyond 90° when lowering yourself or you may risk injury.

If you wish to make the exercise more advanced and increase the intensity, then rather than rather than resting your feet on the floor but your feet on another elevated surface a similar height to what your hands are rested on.

Closed Grip Push-up

Replaces: Tricep Pulldown, Skullcrusher

A variation on the ever reliable push-up. In this version place your hands close together rather than shoulder width apart, this will increase the pressure on your triceps a lot more than a standard push-up. Same applies as before, nose to the floor to get the most out of the rep.

Resistance Band Curls, Dumbbell Curls

Replaces: EZ Barbell Curls, Barbell Curls

To really target your biceps, you may need one of these pieces of equipment as it’s a difficult area to target with bodyweight exercises. With resistance bands stand on the bands and use either handle to perform the curl range of motion. If you happen to have a small set of dumbbells at home perform curls as normal.

Pullups

Replaces: EZ Barbell Curls, Barbell Curls

An exercise that should more than likely be in your workout routine as it is. If you have a pullup bar, perform the rep by raising your legs so they don’t touch the floor and pull yourself up with your arms straightened initially. This will allow for a larger range of motion, resulting in optimal muscle activation.

Back & Shoulders

Wide Grip Pull-ups

Replaces: Shoulder Press, Military Press

Same situation as a standard pull-up, except this time keep your hand shoulder width apart. This is a great compound exercise, it’ll work your lats, back, shoulders as well as your core muscles.

Resistance Band Rows

Replaces: Cable Row, Bent Over Barbell Row

Fix your resistance bands to a door frame, heavy fixed object or your feet. Keep your arms shoulder width apart, squeeze your shoulders and bring the bands back until they reach your body.

Table Rack Chin Up

Replaces: Shoulder Press, Military Press

Be careful with this one. Find a sturdy table in your house that your body can fit under. Hold the edge of the table with your legs and body underneath the table and pull yourself up till your chest touches the table. Make sure the table can support your weight before attempting this.

Legs

Bulgarian Split Squats

Replaces: Barbell Squat

With one foot on a sofa with the sole of your foot facing the ceiling and your other foot on the floor, lower your leg which is on the floor till your normal squat depth and alternate between legs. If you happen to have any dumbbells use these to add resistance.

Hip Thrust

Replaces: Barbell Hip Thrust

With your shoulders on the sofa and your feet on the floor, lift one foot off the floor and perform your regular hip thrust motion by raising your hips towards the ceiling and lowering your hips down low to complete the rep. Like wise to the squat, add a dumbbell if you have one for extra resistance.

Core

Plank/Side Plank

For a standard plank, get into a push up position but place your forearms resting on the floor shoulder width apart. Squeeze your core and glutes to get the most out of the exercise and keep your spine and neck in a neutral position. Try to hold for between 30 seconds to 1 minute. To make this more difficult try doing the plank with only one arm on the floor to up the intensity or simply increase the time held for.

For a side plank, get on your side with one leg on top of the other and lift your body up on your hand whilst keep your legs in the same position. You can really up the intensity on this one by raising one leg off the floor to be in a starfish position but this is not for the faint hearted. This is great exercise for targeting your obliques.

Crunches

Probably the quintessential core exercise. Lie on the floor with your knees raised, if it helps you can place your feet under a sofa or get someone to hold them down. Tighten your core, tuck your chin and lift your upper back whilst keeping the rest of your body on the floor. Return to the starting position and repeat. Aim for between 8-15 reps per set.

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