Working out at home is something everybody should look out for if they are very tight on schedule. It has its perks. Working out at home can save you the time and can save some extra bucks if you are running low on budget.
This post will walk you through 50 exercises you can add to your home workout routine and get the most out of it. Some of these will need no instrument other than your body, and mother nature, while some will require you to grab a pair of
Advice for Beginners:
Beginners and some times even intermediate body-builders make these mistakes and need to keep a close eye on these.
- Warm up:
Every time you start exercising a muscle group, make sure you warm up those muscles. It will make it less likely to injure any muscle group.
- Perfect form is the key:
The form is everything when it comes to maximising the benefits of an exercise.
It doesn’t matter if you master the perfect form and maintain it through every repetition if you are not consistent with your workout routine. Being consistent will put the muscles under stress and will help in the growth of them.
If you are a complete beginner then bodyweight exercises are the one you want to start with. Different muscle groups can be targeted by bodyweight exercises alone.
1. Chair or Bench Dips:
Muscle Group Targeted: Triceps
Starting Position: Grip the edge of the table/chair/bench with your hands. Keep your feet together, legs straight and back upright.
Movement: Lower your body keeping your elbows pointing back. When the elbows are parallel or slightly above the shoulders push back up powerfully.
This bodyweight exercise not just develop the triceps but also improves the stability of shoulder joints.
2. Chair or Bench Dips With Leg Lift
Muscle Group Targeted: Triceps, core
Starting Position: Keep your shoulders, chest, core braced.
Movement: The movement is the same as in the previous exercise, but with one leg off the floor as the body goes down. Lift alternate legs with each repetition.
Raising your leg introduces a rotational element to the exercise, which calls on your core to stabilize the movement.
Muscle Group Targeted: Upper Abs
Starting Position: Place both hands on your temples and don’t pull your neck. Hold your head off the floor and bend your knees keeping your feet on the floor.
Movement: Contract the abs to lift your shoulders off the floor.Keeping the lower back in contact with the floor, curl your chest towards your knees. Pause at the top to squeeze the abs. Lower your body to the starting position.
4. Reverse Crunches
Targeted Muscle Group: Lower Abdominal Muscles
Starting Position: Keep your hands by your sides and rest your head and shoulders on the floor. Your thighs should be vertical and your knees should be bent at 90 degree.
Movement: Contract your abs, then curl your knees towards your chest, keeping your knees bent at 90 degrees. Pause at the top and lower slowly to the starting position.
Lower abs are tougher to sculpt and are easily neglected. This simple workout targets the lower abdominal muscles and can help develop them.
5. Side Crunches or Oblique Crunches
Targeted Muscle Group: Obliques
Starting Position: Lie on your side with one arm in front of you, bending your knees for stability. Touch your fingers to the temple on the side you are going to crunch.
Movement: Using your abs crunch up sideways. Pause at that position and then slowly lower to the starting position.
Obliques and side abs are crucial for complete development of the abdominal muscles.
Targeted Muscle Group: Abs
Starting Position: Start with your fingers by your temples and crunch up to bring your right elbow to your left knee while extending your right leg.
Movement: Twist your torso to another side to bring your left elbow to your right knee while extending your left leg. Use your abs to control the movement and try not to strain at the neck.
This exercise helps to target the abs from a range of angles.
Targeted Muscle Group: Core
Starting Position: Position yourself so your feet are together and your body is straight from head to heels, with your elbows underneath your shoulders and your head looking down. Hold the position as long as possible without letting the hips sag.
This classic static movement helps develop core strength.
8. Side Plank:
Targeted Muscle: Core
Starting Position: Position yourself so your elbow is directly underneath your shoulder and your body is in a straight line from head to heels. Hold the position for as long as you can without letting your hips drop, then repeat it on the other side.
9. Star Plank:
Targeted Muscle Group: Core
Starting Position: Start in side plank position.
Movement: Raise the top arm and leg at the same time. Hold this position for 60 seconds and don’t let the hips sag.
Raising the arms and legs makes it more challenging for the core.
Targeted Muscle Group: Chest, Triceps
Starting Position: Start with your hands level with your shoulders, just wider than shoulder-width apart. Keep your body in a straight line from head to heels throughout the move.
Movement: Lower your body, making sure you keep your elbows pointing back rather than to the sides.
Targeted Muscle Group: Chest, Core
Starting Position: Start in push-up position.
Movement: Lower down keeping the elbows tucked into the body. Push-up powerfully and twist your body rolling on to side of your feet and raise your right arm and make a T-shape. Then return to the starting position. Do the same movement for the other side.
12. Knee to Elbow Push-up
Targeted Muscle Group: Chest, Core
Movement: Lower your chest while bringing one knee towards the elbow. Do this for alternate sides.
Starting Position: Get into a push-up position with your hands beneath your shoulder.
13. One Leg Push-up
Targeted Muscle Group: Chest, Core, Triceps
Starting Position: Get into a push-up position.
Movement: Lift one foot off the floor as you lower your chest. Complete the set with the same leg lifted. For the next set swap the legs.
Targeted Muscle Group: Quads, Glutes, Hamstrings
Starting Position: Stand with your feet at shoulder width apart and toes slightly turned out. Hold the arms out straight.
Movement: Lower the body till your thighs are parallel to the ground. Pause for a second and then return to the starting position.
Targeted Muscle Group: Quads, Hamstrings
Starting Position: Stand upright with your feet together and your arms by your sides.
Movement: Take a step forwards and lower your body such that your front knee is bent at 90 degrees, and your back knee almost touches the ground. Your front knee should not cross your front toe. Push your leg back to the starting position and do the same with the opposite leg.
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Targeted Muscle Group: Core, Lower Back
Starting Position: Stand with your feet at shoulder-width apart and keep your arms in front. Now, squat and twist your arms in one side, such that your arms are out on one side of your knees.
Movement: Stand up and twist to the opposite side, lifting the heel you’re twisting away from and raising your hands over your shoulder.
17. Two-Point Box
Targeted Muscle Group: Lower Back
Starting Position: Kneel on all-fours, then bring your elbows inside to touch the opposite knee beneath your stomach.
Movement: Stretch your leg and arm such that it makes a straight line from foot to toe. Hold the position for 2 seconds and return to the starting position. Repeat with the other side.
Targeted Muscle Group: Lower and Upper Abs
Starting Position: Lie down on the floor with your hands behind the head and your feet together and off the floor.
Movement: Contract your abs as you bring the hands to touch the toes. Keep the legs as straight as possible when you bring them up. Pause for a moment at the top and then return to the starting position.
Adding some weighted dumbbells can help you get the most out of your workout. They are so versatile that they can be used to target almost every muscle group in different ways. And the best part, you don’t need to hit the gym and still can develop some decent muscle gain.
You can use low weights and do high reps or heavy weights and do low reps. All it needs is a variation to make your muscle grow.
19. Barbell Pendlay Row
Targeted Muscle Group: Upper and Lower Back
Starting Position: Place a barbell near your feet on the ground. Hold the bar with a pronated grip while keeping your torso parallel to the ground. And keep the knees partially bent.
Movement: Pull the weight off the ground towards the abdomen and while doing so squeeze the back muscles for contraction. Do not move the hips and knees while doing the movement. Pause for a second and return to the starting position.
20. Arnold Press
Targeted Muscle Group: Shoulders
Starting Position: Sit on a chair with your back supported, and hold two dumbbells in front of you and elbows at chest level. Keep your palms facing towards you.
Movement: As you raise the dumbbell rotate the palms to face them outside. Raise the dumbbell till the arms are extended straight.
21. Lateral Raises
Targeted Muscle Group: Shoulders
Starting Position: Stand with two dumbbells in your hands by the sides.
Movement: Lift the dumbbells to your side with the palms facing downwards. Continue raining them till your arms are parallel to the floor. Pause for a second at the top. Then return to the starting position.
22. Dumbbell Curls
Targeted Muscle Group: Biceps
Starting Position: Hold two dumbbells in two hands while in a standing position or a seated one. Your hands should be at arms length. Palms should be facing your thighs.
Movement: With your shoulders and upper arms stationary, curl the right or left weight upwards. As you curl the dumbbell upwards rotate your palms upwards to contract the biceps. Squeeze the biceps and then return to the starting position. Do this with the other arm as well.
Designing a Workout Routine
Full body workout: The best thing about full body workout is that it can work a large number of muscle groups over a short period of time. The key to designing a great workout routine is balancing push motion with pull motion and opting for compound exercises can help with doing so.
Also when designing a workout routine, always keep progressing the intensity. It is this variation of intensity that helps in building different muscle groups.
Hi, I’m Pankaj Sinha, Co-founder of Healthconditio.org which discusses everything related to health and fitness.
I am from NE, India. I hold a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry and these days I am pursuing my Masters in Nutrition and Dietetics. I am also pursuing my personal trainer certification.