Gym machines are fantastic for resistance training while adding in cardio to get in shape but sometimes access to such machines are not possible. Fear not, fitness expert Hannah Bower has some great exercises that you can try at home for a quick full body work. She recommends doing these at home to help tone your muscles and keep you strong. Her Instagram has the best ideas to substitute expensive gym equipment or for exercises to do with kids. Check out four of her best exercise routines to do at home.
Back stretches: You’ll need a chair, bed or other piece of furniture to replace the extension machine. You should place your heels against the wall or sofa and lean on your furniture of choice as in the photo above, the legs should be supported from the thigh to the pelvis. Contract the abdomen and with the spine perfectly straight, gently rise up and down, marrying the movement to the breath. Do not try to lower too far down and be careful with brusque movements.
Squats with weight: You’ll need elastic bands like ones used in gyms or physiotherapy. They’re a great way of replacing the barbell. You can use different tensions to change things up. Put both feet on it – either wide or close depending on what kind of challenge you fancy – then place the other end over your shoulders. Do gentle squats to build up your strength.
Stretches and squats with a towel: This is a genius hack for replacing the medicine ball. Standing up with your legs separated at hip distance, hold the towel with both hands, above the head. Then squat while whipping the towel down towards the floor. Your abdomen should be contracted and although the movement should be done quickly, be careful to move smoothly and consciously.
Leg Press. This is one of the most common exercises that people do at the gym, to strengthen the lower body and the best way to do it at home is by, once again, using elastic bands. You can hook one end under a piece of furniture and use your hands to stabilize it, while the other end goes round your feet. Stretch and flex your legs to feel the resistance and also work your core muscles.
Remember to warm up for at least five minutes before doing any kind of exercise routine and end up with three or so minutes of stretching. Enjoy your home gym!