When you want to exercise in the comfort of your home, finding the most versatile activities will help you burn more calories and target different muscle groups. Focusing on full-body exercises will give the best of both cardio and strength-training worlds.
Planks can seem intimidating to beginners because they require significant core strength and balance. If you have any issues with your hands or wrists, you can rest on your forearms during planks. A typical plank requires balancing on your hands and toes, but you can quickly add variations by doing side planks, which requires even more strength and balance. Another option with a traditional plank is to move your left knee toward your right elbow, then switch sides, alternating each time. Similar variations can be done with a side plank by doing your plank on the left side and attempting to raise your right knee toward your upper body, then switching sides.
Squats are versatile because you can start by sitting in a chair and working toward squatting without actually touching the chair with your buttocks. After you have some strength and can squat without assistance, squatting with a wider or narrower stance will work different aspects of your buttocks and legs. Kettlebell swings are a variation of a squat where you swing the kettlebell upward as you rise from the squatting position. As you descend into another squat, the kettlebell returns to its position between your legs. During side squats, instead of squatting straight down, you squat to one side or the other. When you squat to one side, the other leg is extended out to your side to help you with balance. Holding dumbbells while doing squats can involve your upper body. When you squat down, do a traditional bicep curl with the dumbbells.
Calisthenics is a type of exercise that uses your own body weight and can take the form of pull-ups or other common exercises. Their movements may look like they are walking up or down stairs while holding on to a pull-up bar. Typically, their activities are set to motivating music, and they almost appear to be dancing along to the beat. Although calisthenics can include other exercises like squats or planks, they are more fun and challenging than traditional exercises. Since pull-ups can be challenging for most people, this is the ideal place to start by trying any training program that can help you achieve your first pull-up and expanding to do many of them before attempting calisthenic pull-ups.
Full-body exercises that require little or no equipment can keep your workout interesting while giving plenty of variety no matter where you go.