It is said that the best things in life are free. Then why should a fit and healthy body cost money? It’s not necessary for you to spend so much money on gym fees. Let me introduce you to a free alternative: Body-weight Exercises.
What are Body-weight Exercises to get fit?
Body-weight exercises are exercises that you only need to use your own body’s weight as a source of resistance instead of dumbbells, barbells or any other form of external weight.
Body-weight exercises fall into 3 categories:
These involve exercises such as push ups, pull ups, pistol squats and dips.
These are more explosive movements. Examples include jump squats, burpees and vertical jumps.
These include technically challenging exercises, such as muscle ups, planches and levers. Why do you think gymnasts look so great!
Benefits of Body-weight Exercises
There are several benefits of performing body-weight exercises. First, and most obvious, you save up on gym fees. Second, you don’t need to buy any equipment; all you require is your body. Thirdly, you can do these exercises anywhere you want.
Be it your own home, a public park, or on the street! It all depends on your mood and creativity. And last of all, body-weight exercises are highly effective and produce excellent results.
A group of researchers from the Department of Health and Exercise Science, The College of New Jersey, noted that the,
“…performance of exercises with BRs (Battling Ropes) and a body-weight burpee exercise elicit relatively higher acute metabolic demands than traditional resistance exercises performed with moderately heavy loading.”
Bodyweight Alternatives for Gym Exercises
1) Push ups
Push ups train your chest, shoulders, triceps and core. This makes them a brilliant alternative to Bench Press, Overhead Press and Tricep Extensions. You can advance towards more challenging variations of push ups to build additional muscle and strength. For example: clap push ups, incline push ups, one-handed push ups and plance push ups.
2) Pull Ups
Pull ups train your back muscles, biceps, forearms and core. Hence, they are an excellent alternative to dumbbell and barbell rows, seated cable rows and lat pull downs. More advanced variations of push ups include muscle ups, front levers, back levers and one-arm pull ups.
3) Pistol Squats
This Pistol squats train the major muscles of your lower body, which include glutes, hamstrings and quads. Pistol squats are an alternative to back squats, front squats, leg presses and leg extensions. You can progress towards more advanced versions such as, pistol jump squats and shrimp squats.
Sprints not only train your complete lower body, but also target your shoulders, back and core. A study by the Department of Sport Science, North West University, South Africa, observed that compared to continuous aerobic training, sprint training had
“stronger beneficial effects on body composition, physical fitness and metabolic fitness.”
Additionally, a study by the Faculty of Biomedical and Life Sciences, University of Glasgow, highlighted the potential of Sprint Interval Training “to provide an alternative exercise model for the improvement of vascular and metabolic health” in overweight and obese men.
So ditch the treadmill and do some sprints!
Body-weight exercises do not require your money; just time and commitment. So if you’re serious about your health and fitness goals but cannot afford the gym, body-weight exercises are the way to go.
Try a few of these exercises today. Get some blood pumping!