K Aleisha Fetters
April 23, 2020,
Photo credit: Artiga Photo
Whatever your fitness level, a bodyweight workout can help you build total-body strength and muscle. Even if you don’t currently have access to gym equipment, you can use bodyweight for resistance and get in a good sweat session. Everyone, from beginners to the most seasoned fitness experts, can give the movements in this circuit a try. This bodyweight workout from trainer Paul Sklar, C.S.C.S. will challenge you.
Here, Sklar demos the routine. All you need is enough space to spread out.
Push-Up to Renegade Row
For the first exercise, bodyweight renegade rows, start in a high plank position with feet about shoulder-width apart. Prioritizing total-body tension and keeping shoulders down and away from ears, perform a single push-up. At the top of the move, transfer upper body weight into one hand, rowing the other to the waist, then return it to the ground. Repeat on the other side. Complete 10 reps.
Keeping your hips square and whole body engaged, as Sklar does in this video, is critical to truly benefitting from the exercise, while also making the move much more challenging. If you still feel like you could do more, position your feet closer together; a narrower base of support will require increased core recruitment.
Squat, Side Lunge, Reverse Lunge, Jump Squat
Next up, Sklar cranks out single reps of squats, side lunges, and reverse lunges. Between each lunge, he does a squat. The exact order matters less than doing all three moves with solid form, which might be good news if you’re uncoordinated. Work to keep an engaged, neutral torso at all times, and lower into each step with control. Sklar finishes the lower body series off with jump squats. Complete three rounds.
Forearm Plank Push-Up
Sklar performs this move to finish off the set. Set up on the floor in a low plank with your hands together. Once you’re solid in the position, press through your hands and squeeze your triceps to extend your elbows, pause, then lower back down with control. At the bottom of the move, your upper arm and forearm should come together to form a 90-degree angle. Complete 10 reps
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For a total-body workout, Sklar advises performing all the exercises consecutively, resting for one minute, and repeating for a total of five to 10 times, depending on your fitness level.
That’s a good as a general recommendation, but since fitness level varies, you should also keep tabs on how hard you feel you’re working. As long as you make sure you’re focused enough on your form, and even the most experienced will feel the burn.