The Best Workout For Beginners: 20 Exercises To Help You Get Started
At some point, we all get the urge to start working out or get back into an old workout routine. Maybe you used to exercise but stopped because life got busy, or maybe you haven’t worked out before but you’ve learned that it's good for both your mental and physical health. Whatever the reason we all start as beginners.
Bodyweight exercises are some of the most beginner-friendly workouts to begin your fitness journey. The risk of injury is low with proper form, and bodyweight exercises do not require any equipment. This means you can do that at home if that is where you’re most comfortable.
20 Beginner Bodyweight Exercises To Kickstart Your Fitness Routine
Start standing with your feet about shoulder-width apart. Toes should be facing forwards, or slightly outward at an angle. Initiate the squat by hinging at the hip, or pushing your rear slightly backward, then descend downward by bending your knees. Keep your chest as vertical as possible and once your hips are even with your knees (or just below), stand back up. This is one rep.
Start by lying flat on your back with your knees bent, feet hip-width apart, and flat on the floor. Hands should be flat by your sides. Initiate the glute bridge by pressing your feet into the floor and lifting your pelvis towards the sky. Squeeze your rear at the top of the rep. Finish with your rear back on the floor. This is one rep.
Start standing with your feet about shoulder-width apart or closer. Toes should be facing forwards. Cross your arms across your chest or place your hands behind your head. Initiate the good morning by hinging at the hips (dropping the rear slightly backward) and allowing your chest to face the floor. Kind of like you are bending over but we want to keep the back flat, do not reach for the ground. Knees should remain soft - not locked but do not bend them like the squat. Once your chest is parallel to the floor stand back up and squeeze your rear. This is one rep.
Start by standing with your feet about hip-width apart facing a wall. You should be about 1-1.5 feet away from the wall. Place your hands flat on the wall just below the shoulders. (If you can’t reach the wall, move closer). Keeping your body in a straight line from your shoulders to your toes, slowly lower your chest towards the wall while bending your elbows. Once your chest touches the wall, push away to arms straight. This is one rep.
These are very similar to the wall pushup except they are done on the ground. Start by lying face down on the floor, hands flat just below your shoulders, elbows bent. Bend your knees (feet off the ground) and tighten your stomach. Using your hands, push your chest and stomach away from the floor. Once your arms are locked out, slowly lower your body back to the ground. This is one rep.
Bent Over Rows
This exercise uses the good morning position along with the arms to work the upper back. Standing with your feet apart, hinge at the hip and face your chest parallel to the floor. Once in this good morning position allow your arms to hang straight down towards the floor. Make fists with your hands and initiate the row by pulling your elbows back towards the sky. You should feel a squeeze in your upper back. Once you cannot pull back any further, slowly lower your fists towards the ground again. This is one rep.
Forward Walking Lunges
Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Place your hands on your waist or behind your head. Step forward with one foot and slowly drop your back knee to the ground. Tap the ground with your back knee, then, step forward to pull your feet together. This is one rep. When your back knee taps the ground, both legs should be forming 90-degree angles. Alternate legs as you walk forward for each rep.
Dead Bug Hold
Start by lying flat on your back on the floor legs straight with your arms by your sides. Bend your knees towards your chest until they reach a 90-degree angle. Your lower back should be rounded and touching the floor at this point. Next, lift your shoulder off of the ground and reach your arms towards your knees and feet. Do not hold onto your legs. Hold this position for 10 seconds at first. Then lie back flat. Gradually increase the hold time as you get better at this exercise.
Lying Leg Lifts
Start by lying flat on your back on the floor legs straight with your arms by your sides. Your palms should be flat on the floor. Initiate the movement by lifting your feet off of the floor and pressing your hands into the ground to assist you. Continue to lift your feet until they are parallel to the sky. Slowly lower your legs and feet back to the floor to complete the rep.
Fire Hydrant Circles
Start on the floor on your hands and knees. Tighten your stomach and initiate the rep by lifting on leg up and back, keeping your knee bent, then circle the same bent leg outwards and back to the floor. Think about drawing a circle with your knee. One rep is completed when your knee is back on the ground. Complete equal reps on each leg.
Straight Arm Plank Hold
Start on the floor on your hands and knees. Tighten your stomach and initiate the rep by stepping both feet back so your legs are straight and your weight is supported by your hands and feet. Hold this position for 10-20 seconds to start. Remember to keep your stomach tight and push your upper back towards the sky. Slowly lower your legs and feet back to the floor when you are finished.
Marching in Place
Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Place your hands on your waist or behind your head. Initiate the movement by lifting one knee as high as you can, lowering your food back to the floor, and doing the same with the opposite leg. March in place for reps or a certain amount of time. Start with 30 seconds and work your way up.
Start on the floor on your hands and knees. Tighten your stomach and initiate the rep by lifting on leg up and back, keeping your knee bent. Stop lifting when your thigh is parallel to the floor, then lower your knee back to the ground. This is one rep. Complete equal reps on each leg.
Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Bend forward and reach for the floor, as you do this step, or hop back with your feet. You should land in a straight arm plank position. Once you are here, step or hop your feet towards your arms and stand up. This is one rep.
Start on the floor on your hands and knees. Tighten your stomach and initiate the rep by lifting 1 leg off the ground and extending it straight behind you, at the same time lift the opposite arm and extend it straight by your head. Slowly lower your arm and leg back to the floor. This is one rep. Complete equal reps on each side.
Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Bend forward and touch the floor with your hands, as you do this continue to walk your hands forward until you are in a straight arm plank position. Then walk your feet towards your hands until they are as close as you can get them. This is one rep. Complete multiple reps by walking your hands out again and repeating. You should not stand up until you have finished your last rep.
Start in the straight arm plank position. While in this position pull one knee towards your chest then extend the leg back to the starting position. Repeat on the other leg. Complete a certain amount of reps or repeat for a time duration.
Table Top Hip Thrust
Start sitting on the ground with your hands behind your rear to support you. The feet should be flat on the ground, knees bent. Initiate the rep by pressing your feet and hands into the floor as you lift your pelvis towards the sky. Squeeze your rear at the top and slowly lower back to the ground. This is one rep.
Start by standing with your feet hip-width apart. Bend forward and reach the floor with your arms straight. As you do this, you want to lift one leg off of the ground and extend it straight behind you. You do not actually have to touch the ground. Your supporting leg should be slightly bent. Once you feel that your chest is parallel to the floor (like the good morning) stand back up and bring your lifted leg back to the floor. This is one rep. Complete equal reps on each side.
Alternating Superman Arm & Leg Lifts
Start by lying face down on the floor with your arms extended straight over your head. Slowly lift 1 arm and the opposite leg away from the ground, keeping them straight. You should feel your hamstring, lower, and upper back tighten. Once you have lifted as high as you can, slowly lower back to the ground and repeat on the other side. Complete equal reps on each side.