We understand a gym membership can be pricy, and even if you have one, getting to the gym may sometimes seem like an impossible task. We live hectic lives, but that should never be an excuse when it comes to maintaining your health and wellbeing (See: Don’t Let These Excuses Stop You From Working Out). Luckily, bodyweight training is a great way to get in your workout, in a short amount of time. You can work out right in the comfort of your own home.
*Related: 8 Ways to Exercise on a Busy Schedule
Therefore, it is known to be one of the easiest ways to achieve your fitness goals. You can customize your own fitness routine and you will never get bored.
Exercising has been shown to have a positive impact on both the body and mind. According to Dr. Axe, “numerous studies show that building lean muscle mass is also great for your heart, blood vessels, lungs, hormone production and even brain activity.”
*Other bodyweight exercises include burpees, lunge jumps, squats, arm circles and planks.
Here are a few reasons why you should start bodyweight training today.
1. It can be a combination of cardio and strength training- Bodyweight training is a great way to get in a quick cardio session while also increasing your strength (See: Tips for Stronger Muscles). Try jumping jacks, cross jacks, lateral bunny hops and high knees.
2. You will never get bored- Tired of the same old treadmill routine? Maybe you’re just sick of the same machines at the gym. Bodyweight training offers you the chance to make up and change your workout. Dr. Axe says, “for each strength workout, aim to do eight to 10 different exercises, varying the muscles that each one targets. Each exercise is done in one set, and within each set you should perform eight to 12 reps.”
3. You don’t need access to equipment- Bodyweight training is perfect for the individual who does not have access to the gym or any type of equipment such as weights. You can achieve similar gains without the strain weights put on your body. Try: Calf raises, triceps dips and mountain climbers.
4. Lower risk of injury- Bodyweight exercises have been shown to have a lower risk of injury compared to using free weights and machines. As said before, using weights may put a strain on your muscles which in turn may cause injury.
5. Improve your health- Exercise improves your heart health, reduces the risk for diabetes, helps fight depression, improves the health of your joints and helps maintain cognitive function. *Also see: How Exercise Helps with Digestive Health.
6. Work different muscle groups at once- Bodyweight exercises offer you the ability to work a variety of different muscles at one time. For instance burpees are known to be one of the best full-body exercises. They require you to squat, do push-ups and jump; working your legs and arms all in one rep. (See: How to Do a Burpee)
--Nicole Dossantos, Editor The Active Times