Quarantine is a rough time for everyone. That is why it is important, more now than ever to stay active. Working out produces positive endorphins that are released when being physically active. Physical activity has a whole slew of mental and physical benefits. During a time like quarantine, it is important to put your mental health first, and stay active to help regulate stress. Besides just creating endorphins, working out helps regulate anxiety and increases productivity, and boosts self-esteem.
This can be hard to accomplish when all the gyms are closed. Many people are struggling with coming to terms with the gyms being closed. However, quarantine has been going on for a solid two months at this point, and could continue for the foreseeable future. Take this time as an opportunity to learn how to do some intense at home workouts. Just because you may be lacking the different equipment a gym has, does not mean that you cannot get a great workout in. All it takes is getting creative with bodyweight exercises. Maybe you will unearth a new passion for home workouts during this quarantine, who knows. The option of bodyweight exercises allows more freedom, than workouts that require gym equipment. Bodyweight exercises can be completed almost anywhere and anytime, and for free. No need to spend money on pricy gym equipment or a gym membership here! The only thing required, is a little motivation on your end. Listed in this article, are a few bodyweight exercise ideas to get your quarantine fitness journey started.
Push-ups are a classic and timeless workout. The most stereotypical “no equipment required” workout. Push-ups work the chest, shoulder, triceps, and backs muscles. To make sure that any workout is effective, it is important to properly engage the muscles and have proper form. So, what is the proper form of a push-up? Start by getting down on your hands and knees, then assume a plank like position. The palms of the hands should be completely flat on the ground, shoulder-width apart. The core should be braced; this will help keep the back and shoulders aligned. Feet should be together, while only toes are touching the ground. This is the proper form for a push-up.
There are many variations for a push-up that are possible. Each variation targets a different muscle group in a different way. The hardest variation, Diamond push-ups target the inner chest and triceps muscles. The wide-arm placement push-ups targets the full chest, as more strain is applied to the chest muscles when completing a wide armed push-up. Lastly, one could elevate their feet on a flat surface like a couch or a chair, to enhance the difficulty of the exercise. This variation would target the upper chest muscles. For beginners in their fitness journey, there is a safer option. The key is to remain on the knees. This is a way to balance and assist your form when attempting to do a push-up. Many people prefer the safer variation to start with, and nothing is wrong with that.
Burpees are a good way to get in a bit of cardio while completing bodyweight exercises, and to get that heart rate up. To complete a burpee, stand with feet hip-width apart. Arms should remain at the sides. A burpee is comprised of two main movements. In a sense, it is comparable to a push-up with a vertical jump incorporated at the end. Begin by bending the knees and lowering hips down while placing both hands on the ground, essentially dropping flat to be parallel with the ground, in a push-up stance. The next part is the trickiest. Pull the feet back in towards the hands, and jump up to complete a vertical jump. Burpees can take a few attempts to master, but are well worth the effort.
3. Tricep Dips
A tricep dip is self-explanatory. To begin grip the edge of surface that allows you to completely extend your arms when completing the movement. The equivalent to this may be a chair, coffee table, couch, or a bench. The hands should remain turned out behind the body, with the palms of the hands flat on the surface, with the back perpendicular to the surface coming to a ninety-degree angle. Hover the butt in front of the surface, with legs slightly extended, while remaining bent. Feet should remain flat on the ground in front. Imagine being in a crab walk positions, with the arms elevated. That is the beginning position. Next straighten the arms, and lower the body towards the floor until the arms are at a ninety-degree angle. Then push-up. Do not let the arms go past the ninety-degree angle, or else the movement could cause injury.
Squats mainly target the glutes and upper thighs, but can target the back muscles, abs, and calves. When completed properly, they are a great way to strengthen the overall body. To begin a squat start with the feet hip-width apart. It is important to pay attention to pay attention to the knees to avoid injury. Keep the back straight, then begin to squat. The hips should fall back, while the knees begin to bend. Bend deeply. When coming back up contract the glute muscles, and pull the hips forward. Imagine a string being attached to the hips, and pulling them up and forward.
Planks engage the core, when done properly. Begin in a push-up like position, except feet should be about shoulder-width apart. Elbows belong directly beneath the shoulders. Squeeze the core and glutes. The knees should remain locked, and the tailbone should be slightly tucked. If done properly, a burning feeling will be felt within the core. Planks are harder than they look.