Training

Best Home Workouts | Selected By Our Athletes

With the gyms still closed for the foreseeable — home workouts are the only hope for us fitness fanatics and barbell lovers. Whilst the home gym owners are sat on their pedestals, the squat rack, we must soldier on to reach our fitness goals.

A home workout doesn’t have to be a bad or cardio-based workout, there are so many ways to achieve all your goals without the need for equipment.

Home workouts aren’t as daunting as it first seems, you just need a little patience and a great plan to follow. It’s all about working each muscle while using only bodyweight or very little resistance.

Well, you’ve come to the right place. Not only do we have a wide range of workouts tailored to target every muscle group — we have a mix of the best ambassador and expert-backed home workouts all for free.

Equipment-Free Workouts

Mattdoesfitness’ Ab Workout

Fitness YouTube sensation brings us his go-to ab workout from the comfort of home. Abs are largely neglected when it comes to their importance in weightlifting so now is a great time to reflect and give this a go.

Reverse Crunch

3 sets of 12 rep.

‘Reverse crunches target all the muscles in your abs, with the focus on the lower core. Supporting muscles will include the obliques, and the transverse abdominis — the deepest of all abdominal muscles, which help stabilise your spine and core. The added hip lift will further engage the lower core and surrounding muscles that support stability.’

Raised Leg Crunches

3sets of 15 reps.

‘The crunch is a popular choice for those six-pack abs.  They help to strengthen your core, which includes your lower back muscles and obliques, that will improve your balance and posture.  Raising the legs is much comfier for the lower back and if done support, adds tension to the lower abs.’

Alternating Side Plank

3 sets of 10 reps.

‘The various range of plank exercises allow you to strengthen your body as a whole and not just the core but incorporating all three into one movement just ups the ante and more!  Added tension through the movement which keeps the body steady just adds to the exercise and each body part involved.’

Folded Arms Sit-Up

3 sets of 15 reps.

‘The sit-up is classed as a major player in ab exercises by working the abdominal muscles, including rectus abdominis, external and internal obliques, iliopsoas and rectus femoris.  Simply placing your arms across your chest will add some slight resistance and reduce the temptation of pulling your body up as you may be when placing behind your head.’

Flutter Kicks

3 sets of 12 reps. A rep is one right then one left kick — don’t cheat those reps.

‘Flutter kicks are an exercise that works the muscles of your core, specifically the lower rectus abdominal muscles, plus the hip flexors which support your stability.  You can support your back by placing your hands under or for added difficulty, keep them to the side.’

Chillin’ With Tj’Js Chest Workout

TJ’s chest workout is a great substitute for the flat bench press and all its variations. This workout hits all areas of the chest and it can be done from the comfort of your living room.

Press Ups 21’s

“5 sets of 21 reps. An amazing twist on a great traditional chest, shoulder and triceps movement.”

How To Do:

  • Begin with your body in a plank position, then place the hands directly in line with the shoulders.
  • Take the chest down to halfway through the press up movement, by bending at the elbows. Keep the back straight throughout.
  • Once you have completed 7 half reps in the top position, proceed to complete 7 half reps in the bottom position. Your chest should hover just above the floor at the bottom of the movement.
  • Once you have completed 7 reps in the “bottom” position. Return to the starting position.
  • Now complete 7 “full” repetitions, from the starting position, all the way down to the floor and back up. All three 7 rep sections create one full set of 21’s.

Narrow Stance Press Ups

“5 sets of 15 reps. Performed with or without a cooking bowl, this is a fantastic exercise for targeting both the central chest line and the lower chest, with excellent triceps involvement too.”

How To Do:

  • Begin with your body in a plank position, but this time, place the hands in a “diamond” position (thumb tips touching each other) in direct line with the sternum.
  • If you’re looking to add a bigger chest stretch, place your hands on either side of a cooking bowl.
  • Keep the body straight, and bend at the elbows to lower the chest until it hovers just above the floor (or the bowl).)
  • Return to the starting position without fully locking out the arms.

Alternating Shuffle Press Ups

“5 sets of 20 reps. This is a brilliant exercise for giving the chest a massive stretch, whilst working each half of the upper body independently to achieve better body balance.”

How To Do:

  • Begin with your body in a plank position. Place a cooking bowl on the floor to the left of either shoulder. Place either the left or right hand on the bowl.
  • Bend at the elbows whilst keeping the back straight, and with one hand on the cooking bowl. Return to the starting position whilst “hopping” over to the opposite side of the bowl.
  • Ensure that the opposite hand lands on the bowl when switching sides. Now proceed to bend at the elbows and perform a full press up, before repeating the exercise.
  • Perform a total of 5 sets of 20 reps (10 reps on each side.)

Decline Press Ups

“5 sets of 10 reps. With the feet on a bench and the body on a decline, you’ll target the upper chest more effectively. A 5-second negative phase makes this exercise even more challenging.”

How To Do:

  • Start with the feet on a chair, and the body in a plank position. Ensure the hands are underneath the shoulders.
  • Bend at the elbows whilst keeping the back straight. Take 5 seconds to lower the chest until it hovers just above the floor.
  • Return to the starting position (perform this section over the space of 1-2 seconds), whilst leaving a slight bend in the arms.

Our Equipment Free Legs, Bum and Tum Workout

Our PT Chris Appleton gave us lots of inspiration for a challenging leg, bum and tum workout, here are 5 great exercises to try at home.

Squats

‘3 sets of 20 reps’

  • Start with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Body upright looking forward and a tight core.
  • Heels planted, sit as deep as you can before pushing back to a standing start.
  • Take two seconds to release down, hold for two and power back up.

Walking Lunges

‘4 sets of 20 reps – 10 reps on each leg’

  • Stand upright, feet together, and take a big lunge forward with your right leg, lowering your hips toward the floor.
  • Bend both knees to 90-degree angles. The back knee should point toward but not touch the floor, and your front knee should be directly over the ankle.
  • Power form this position and continue through until the opposite leg is now forward lunging.
  • Keep the core tight and upper body stable and upright.
  • Put your hands on your hips or above your head for some added difficulty.

Glute Bridges

‘4 sets of 10 reps’

  • Start by laying on your back with a 90-degree bend at your knees
  • Start the movement by tucking your hips under and activate your TVA by sucking in the belly button
  • Raise your hips until you can draw a straight line from your shoulders through your hips to your knees
  • The pressure should be through the heels of your feet and you should try to prevent any excessive curvature to your lower back
  • Return to the start of the movement without allowing your hips to rest on the floor

The Deadbug

‘30 seconds on, 30 seconds off – repeat 4 times’

  • Lie flat on your back, with your arms held out in front of you, reaching for the sky.
  • Bring your legs up so your knees are bent at 90-degree angles.
  • Start by lowering your right arm and left leg at the same time, exhaling as you go.
  • Keep going until your right arm and left leg are slightly above the floor.
  • Slowly return to the starting position and repeat with the opposite limbs.

Leg Raises

‘30 seconds on, 30 seconds off – repeat 4 times’

  • Lie on your back, legs straight and together.
  • Keep your legs straight and lift them to the ceiling until your butt comes off the floor.
  • Slowly lower your legs back down till they’re just above the floor and hold this position for a moment.
  • Raise your legs back up and repeat the exercise.

 

Resistance Band Home Workouts

Now you might be one of the lucky ones — you may have some corroded dumbbells or a barbell at home and for that we are jealous. If you’re not this fortunate, don’t worry. The humble resistance band is all you need for this killer workouts.

They’re relatively inexpensive and help to add that much-needed resistance that we so desperately crave from the gym machines.

A benefit of using bands is that it provides resistance to your muscles throughout the full range of motion — so there’ is no escaping the pain.

Sarah Gracce Leg Workout

Bulgarian Split Squats

Targeted Muscles: Quads, glutes.

The split squat is a great way to build single-leg strength, muscle, and improve hip mobility. Oh, it will test your balance and coordination too.

  • Place one foot on a solid surface behind you and take a big stride out. A bench or chair is perfect for this.
  • Keeping your body upright, slowly lower yourself until your front knee is bent at a 90-degree angle.
  • Pause at the bottom of the move, then push back up to the starting position.

 Stiff-Leg Deadlifts

Targeted Muscles: Hamstrings, lower back, glutes.

Stiff legged deadlifts are an isolating exercise and great when used as an accessory to those bigger squats and deadlifts. They’ll target your hamstrings and glutes, as well as your lower back and core.

  • Standing on your resistance band, grab both ends and assume the starting position.
  • Using your hips as a hinge, lean forward keeping a slight bend in the knee throughout.
  • Slide the band down your legs keeping your back flat and spine neutral.
  • Drive your hips back and lower the band as far as possible, until you feel the stretch in your hamstrings.
  • Push back up and return to the starting position.

“The wider your stance on the band, the tighter and more resistance they’ll provide. It’s really easy to increase and decreased the difficulty to suit your needs. They’re also great for stretching out your tight hamstrings after a tough leg session”

Standing Kickbacks

Targeted Muscles: Glutes and hamstrings

Standing kickbacks work all three muscles in your glutes, while also engaging the hamstrings as a secondary muscle.

  • Loop the band just above both ankles.
  • Keep the body stable and reduce twisting by engaging the core.
  • Kick backwards slowly, tensing the glute for 1 second each time.
  • Keep a slight bend in the knee during the movement.
  • Once you’ve done all your reps on one side, switch legs.
  • Do all your reps on one side, then switch to the other side.

Single-Leg Hip Thrust

Targeted Muscles: Glutes and core

  • Attach each end of the resistance band under each foot with the band wrapped over the upper leg.
  • Place your back against a bench, step or chair, with one knee bent and your foot flat on the floor.
  • Raise your other leg and bend your knee so that your hip and knee form 90-degree angles.
  • Using the one leg, push away, squeeze your glutes and raise your hips until they’re in line with your torso.
  • Lower yourself back down to the starting position. That’s one rep.

Kneeling Kickbacks

Targeted Muscles: Glutes, hamstrings

  • Start on all fours and align your wrists under your shoulders and your knees under your hips.
  • Anchor the middle of your resistance band around one foot and place the other underneath your palms, to hold it in place.
  • Without changing the angle of your knee, extend your leg back and upwards until your thigh is parallel to the ground.
  • Squeeze your glutes at the top of the movement and hold.
  • Return to your starting position without touching your knee to the ground and repeat.
  • Swap legs and repeat the steps.

Walking Squats

Targeted Muscles: Glutes, quads, hips.

  • Take a light to medium band and place it around both legs, just above your ankles.
  • Lower yourself into a squat, getting as low as you feel comfortable.
  • Take two steps to the side and lower yourself into another squat.
  • Make sure you have resistance on the band at all times

Fire Hydrants

Targeted Muscles: Hip abductor muscles which include the gluteus medius, gluteus minimus, and tensor fasciae late.

  • Loop your resistance band just above your knees.
  • Get yourself onto all-fours with your hands under your shoulders and knees under your hips.
  • Push one leg away from the body by lifting your left knee out to the side. It’s important to keep your core engaged so your body doesn’t rotate during the movement.
  • Return your leg to your starting position. That’s one rep.
  • Once you’ve done all your reps on the side, switch legs.
  • Do all your reps on one side, then switch to the other side.

Glute Bridges

Targeted Muscles: Glutes, core, hips, quads.

  • Wrap both ends of the band around your feet.
  • Lie on your back placing the band over the knees, resting on your upper legs, with your feet shoulder-width apart.
  • Pressing upwards, squeeze the glutes at the top for 1-2 seconds.
  • 15-20 reps would provide a great burn to finish.

 

4 – Move Resistance Band Pull Workout

This one has come from @p_barglik and we think it’s a pretty innovative way to get a good workout in.

Bentover Row

“Complete 5 sets of 12-15 reps. This exercise targets the lats, rhomboids, biceps.”

How to do:

  • Stand on a resistance band grabbing each end.
  • Bend forward and hold the band just under or level with your knee.
  • Pull the band towards your chest, keeping your elbows tucked in and squeeze your shoulder blades together.
  • Keep your core is engaged to steady the body during the motion and assist in strengthening the lower back.

Rear Delt Flyes

“Do 5 sets of 12-15 reps for each arm. This will work your rear deltoids, triceps, trapezius.

How to do:

  • Standing upright, hold the band at each end.
  • Arms straight out in front of you, at shoulder height.
  • Keeping one arm straight and steady, pull the band apart to the side of your body slowly before returning to the start.
  • Always keep the tension in the band.
  • Keep the body still and core engaged ensuring the muscle is doing the work.

Single Arm Lat Pulldown

“5 sets of 12-15 reps each side. This exercise will hit the latissimus dorsi, shoulders, arms.

How to do:

  • Hold the band directly up above your head ensuring tension is in the band.
  • Holding one arm up, pull the other arm down beside the body recreating a lat pulldown.
  • Keep the motion slow and controlled squeezing the muscle.

 Superman Rows

“Complete 5 sets of 12 -15 reps. This exercise is perfect for targeting the shoulders, core, glutes, lower back, arms, traps.”

How to do:

  • Lie face down, with your arms directly above your head and the band looped around both forearms.
  • Lift your chest off the floor, engage the glutes and core steadying the body.
  • Pull both arms by your side and the band behind your head and squeezing your shoulder blades together like a row.

Take-Home Message

This proves that you can do some of the best workouts without a dumbbell insight. Yes, it’s hard to match the feeling of training with barbells and weight machines but by no means is it impossible.

Whether you have a few resistance bands or a whole gym in your garage, it shouldn’t stop you from getting closer to your goals. It might just take a little longer or require a little more creativity – but you’ll get there.

Our articles should be used for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to be taken as medical advice. If you’re concerned, consult a health professional before taking dietary supplements or introducing any major changes to your diet.



Isaac Syred

Isaac Syred

Writer and expert

Isaac has a passion for all things fitness, he's always been interested in football, playing at a high youth level, and has also enjoyed 4 years of competitive kickboxing. Over recent years Isaac has dedicated himself to continually improving in the gym, enjoying both functional fitness and bodybuilding styles of workouts.

He strongly believes that you should always have balance and likes to spend his time at the weekends socialising with his friends.


SPEND MORE, SAVE MORE | USE CODE: MORE Be quick, shop now!