Body-Weight Exercises to Build Your Strength

April 22, 2022 by First Federal Bank

exercise-1You don’t have to have a gym membership or even a set of dumbbells to get a good workout in. With body-weight exercises, you’ll have everything you need to get a satisfying, strengthening workout from the comfort of your own home.


When it comes down to aesthetics, many people would put six-pack abs at or near the top of their most-wanted list. While sit ups and crunches can help you achieve this goal, planks may well be the secret weapon you need to get there.

If you’ve gotten comfortable doing pushups, planking should come rather naturally. You’ll maintain the same rigid back and hips that you should have when doing pushups, only you’ll rest your body weight on your forearms.

From this position, simply hold yourself aloft, keeping your back straight and hips level, maintaining the form for as long as possible. Doing this for a few minutes a day can have tremendous positive effects in building balance and flexibility — not to mention crafting a rock-solid core.


Pushups are perhaps the gold standard for body-weight exercises. You can use pushups as a building block for a stronger upper body, working everything from your chest to your triceps to your core.

Perfecting the pushup form isn’t particularly hard, but WebMD Chief Medical Director Michael W. Smith notes a couple of key tips. Namely, you’ll want to keep your movements controlled and smooth and keep your hips and back straight. Focusing on speed and allowing your back or hips to bow or bend minimizes the effectiveness of the exercise.

Once you feel comfortable with the basic form and are able to do a good number of reps, you can try mixing things up. Decline pushups, according to Healthline contributor Kirsten Nunez, helps target the upper chest and shoulders. Adjusting width and pulling your hands in closer targets the triceps. Incorporating different styles on a daily or weekly basis helps you build a strong, defined upper body.


Squats are another essential body-weight exercise that works several key muscle groups at once. Hitting your quads, glutes, and core among others, squats are crucial to building and maintaining strength as your continue your exercise journey.

Dr. Jordan Metzl and Karen Barrow, writing for The New York Time’s Well section, note form is essential when it comes to squatting. You’ll want to focus on hip and knee placement especially since not lining up properly can cause unneeded soreness or even injury. Watch a few videos of fitness experts performing the motion and emulate their movement.

Once you establish good form, you can focus on maximizing reps and weight. Healthline contributor Daniel Bubnis suggests the jump squats, which work in a jump at the height of the movement to increase calisthenics, or squat pulsing to maximize time under tension.

You can also consider working with some kind of weight to help increase muscle strength, be it kettlebells or simply holding a heavy object that doesn’t throw off your balance.

Having these and other core body-weight exercises in your arsenal is a great benefit if you’re looking to stay healthy. You can use these in place of or as a supplement to your time at the gym, giving you alternatives for keeping fit if you’re looking to save money or just don’t have the time to go somewhere to work out after a long day at the office. 

Categories: Lifestyle

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