Exercises for home training
by Kristoffer Kjaer on May 30, 2022
Home exercise is a good idea if you don't have the time or motivation to get out of the door. We've all been there, it's raining and it's cold, so it's not exactly tempting to go for a walk or cycle to work - but it can be just as good to do some exercises at home.
You can do it out in the garden, on the living room floor or down in the yard - all you need is your own body and a little motivation. It could be music in your ears or it could be a good audio book, whatever gets you going or off the sofa. In fact, it could be vacuuming, dancing or taking the lawnmower for a walk. It all counts if you want more activity in your everyday life.
We've put together some of our favourite home exercise routines - routines we've used during the shutdown in Denmark.
Leg exercises for home exercise
Your legs are made up of big muscles that need a lot of energy. You obviously use your legs every day, but it's good to get the circulation going in your legs - especially if you sit down a lot during the day. The exercises vary in difficulty, but give them a try - and you might want to Google them if the explanation here is a bit hard to understand.
This exercise is easy to do anywhere, gets your heart rate up and can actually be tough, even with normal body weight! You may know a common squat movement where you have a barbell on your back. It's the same movement, but where you just go down to your knees and up again without any weight on your shoulders.
Place your feet shoulder-width apart with your toes pointing slightly outwards. Then raise your arms in front of you to balance and now go down to your knees until your thighs are about parallel to the floor you are standing on. It's a very simple exercise, but it gives really good results. If you need a challenge, you can fill a bag with something heavy, such as. books or bottles of water, and you will increase the weight.
If you want to incorporate a bit more movement into your leg workout, we recommend Jump Squats. It's the same principle as the exercise above, but instead of going up and down at a controlled pace, you jump upwards when your legs are parallel to the floor. When you land again, you once again go down in the squat and jump upwards again.
It's good for your muscles and fitness, as you get your heart rate up from moving so explosively - but it's also good for your joints and tendons to do physical work like this.
If you want to burn off your legs while getting your heart rate close to max, we recommend the angel hop, which puts a lot of sweat on your brow while strengthening your leg muscles. It's a full-body exercise, but you'll mainly work your glutes and thighs. It requires a little higher ceiling, so it might be a good idea to do it outdoors.
You start the exercise down on one knee. We recommend that you have your strong leg in front so you can get a good start from the beginning. From the lunge position, where you are down on one knee, jump as high as you can while swinging your arms up over your head. Your legs now change position and you have your weak leg in front on repeat number 2. Continue like this for 45 seconds - or for 10 repetitions of 3 times, depending on how you train.
Upper body exercises for home training
Upper body training involves all muscles of the upper body, but our recommendations consist mainly of exercises that target the large muscle groups, chest and back. In all exercises, the entire upper body is used, but the chest and back will be most challenged.
Push-ups / Arm stretches
This classic is probably one of the most common exercises that only use body weight. Arm curls can be performed in many different variations, but common to them all is that you hit the chest and triceps when performing an arm stretch. You can also adjust the hardness by doing the exercise on either your knees or feet - or a combination of the two.
Lie on your stomach on the floor and now place your hands shoulder-width apart. Tense up your body and core so you're completely stiff as a board. Then stand up on your toes - or knees, if you don't have the strength to do them on your toes - and simply push the floor away from yourself. You lift your body with your chest muscles when you have your hands shoulder-width apart - but if you move your hands further apart, you'll hit your triceps more.
Backbends are also a classic that you may remember from gym class. This exercise is great for those who are sedentary at a desk for much of your day. When you sit at a desk, you're automatically hunched over a bit and a backbend tries to straighten your body out.
Lie on the floor on your stomach with your arms folded in front of your face, which is also facing the floor. Then lift your chest as far off the floor as possible while keeping your arms in front of your face. In this way, you bend in the opposite direction of everything you need to increase your activity!