Effective Bodyweight Exercises for a Home Workout

Effective Bodyweight Exercises for a Home Workout

Staying fit and healthy doesn’t always mean spending a lot of money on gym memberships like those offered by iLoveKickboxing or fancy equipment. In fact, you can get the physique you want with bodyweight exercises at home.

Benefits of Bodyweight Exercises

There are several reasons why incorporating bodyweight exercises into your fitness routine can be highly beneficial:

  • It’s more efficient because you can get results in just a short period of time.
  • Bodyweight exercises can be both for cardio and strength training.
  • These exercises are very effective for fat burning.
  • You can switch up your routine easily.
  • You can do these exercises anytime, anywhere.
  • You don’t need to invest in fancy or expensive equipment.

Bodyweight Exercises vs. Other Workouts

Let’s compare bodyweight exercises to other popular workout methods:

Bodyweight Exercises vs. Gym Workouts


  • Convenience: Bodyweight exercises can be done anywhere, eliminating the need for a gym.
  • Accessibility: These workouts are free and accessible to everyone.
  • Reduced resistance: Some gym machines reduce the natural resistance of certain motions, potentially diminishing the benefits.
  • Adaptability: In situations where accessing a gym is impossible or unsafe, bodyweight exercises allow you to maintain your routine.


  • Beginners may find it easier to start with gym machines that provide reduced resistance and guidance.
  • Cost can be a barrier for some individuals, although it can also be a motivating factor for others.
  • The support and guidance from gym trainers and staff, as well as the camaraderie of group sessions, may be missed. However, group bodyweight exercise sessions are also available, although they may be limited due to the pandemic.

Bodyweight Exercises vs. Cardio Workouts


  • Metabolic advantages: Bodyweight exercises continue to burn calories and fat even after the workout ends. Cardio workouts, such as running, only burn calories during the activity.
  • Cardio benefits: Bodyweight exercises provide cardiovascular benefits alongside strength building, similar to a hearty push-up or pull-up.
  • Intensity: A high-intensity circuit of bodyweight exercises can elevate your heart rate as effectively as a run.


  • Variety: Combining cardio with weight-based exercises, like running and lifting weights, is ideal for maximizing benefits and promoting weight loss in adults with overweight or obesity.
  • Switching it up: It’s important to incorporate a variety of exercises to reap the full range of benefits. Therefore, occasional runs or other forms of cardio are still valuable.

Bodyweight Exercises vs. Free Weights


  • Accessibility: Bodyweight exercises don’t require access to a gym or any equipment.
  • Safety: Unlike using free weights, you don’t have to worry about dropping weights on yourself during bodyweight exercises.
  • Agility: Switching between movements is quicker with bodyweight exercises, making them ideal for cardio workouts.
  • Flexibility: Bodyweight exercises promote flexibility rather than pure muscle bulk.


  • Gradual progression: While there are beginner bodyweight exercises, free weights allow for more controlled and gradual increases in difficulty.
  • Personalization: Free weights offer a wider range of options to target specific muscle groups compared to bodyweight exercises.

Bodyweight Exercises for Beginners

If you’re new to bodyweight exercises, here are a few beginner-friendly moves to get you started:

Arm circles

  • Stand with your arms extended by your sides, perpendicular to your torso.
  • Make clockwise circles, about 1 foot in diameter, for 20-30 seconds.
  • Reverse the movement and go counterclockwise.


  • Lie facedown with your forearms on the floor and hands clasped.
  • Extend your legs behind you and rise up onto your toes.
  • Tighten your core and hold the position for 30-60 seconds.


  • Stand with your feet parallel or turned out 15 degrees, whichever is more comfortable.
  • Slowly crouch by bending your hips and knees until your thighs are at least parallel to the floor.
  • Press through your heels to return to a standing position.


  • Stand with your hands on your hips and feet hip-width apart.
  • Step your right leg forward and slowly lower your body until your left (back) knee is close to or touching the floor, forming a 90-degree angle.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat on the other side. You can also try stepping backward into the lunge for variation.


  • Start in a low squat position with your hands on the floor.
  • Kick your feet back into a push-up position.
  • Complete one push-up, then return your feet to the squat position.
  • Leap up as high as possible before repeating the sequence.


  • Find a step or bench.
  • Place your right foot on the elevated surface and step up until your right leg is straight.
  • Return to the starting position and repeat on the other side. Aim for 10-12 reps on each side.

Here’s a video demo on the right way to do step ups:

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