Whether you’re traveling over the summer or heading home without a gym membership, the end of the school year for many students means not having access to equipment like that at the Herbert Wellness Center. But don’t worry—you don’t need all the extras to get a killer workout in, no matter where you are.
Calisthenic exercises require nothing more than your own bodyweight, making them a tough but convenient way to get a workout in anywhere, anytime. According to a 2017 study by the University of Palermo, calisthenics improve posture, strength and body composition. They may not call for weights, but make no mistake—calisthenics are anything but easy. But their ability to easily be modified make them perfect for beginner and advanced fitness enthusiasts alike.
This calisthenics workout routine was recommended by former professional soccer player turned 54D trainer
Victor Giraldo. After a warmup, complete these exercises for one minute and then repeat the sequence three times.
Place your feet either at either hip or shoulder width apart, whichever feels most natural. Rotate your toes out around 10 degrees, with a neutral spine and shoulders pushed back. Move your hips back like sitting in a chair, while keeping your chest up. To come back up, push through your heels and return to the start. To add a challenge, work in jumps at the top of the movement, hold or pulse at the bottom or consider learning pistol squats.
Main muscles: quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, groin, hip flexors, calves.
Lower yourself into a squat position. Then, place your hands on the floor and hop into a plank position. Jump or step your legs forward to return to the squat position. To make the motion more difficult, do a push up while in the plank position.
Main muscles: calves, quadriceps, glutes, core, shoulders, chest, triceps.
Begin in a high-plank position with your arms aligned under your shoulders and both feet at the width of your shoulders like a table. Tightening your core, shoulders and legs, tap your left shoulder with your right hand. Repeat this on the other side alternating arms at preferred speed and intensity.
Main muscles: transverse abdominals, obliques, shoulders
Start in a neutral stance, then place your hands on your hips and step forward with your right leg, bending your knees and lowering down into a lunge position. Repeat the same movement, alternating legs as you move forward.
Main muscles: quadriceps, core, hips flexors, glutes.
Begin in a high plank, making sure you’re tightening your core. Slowly bend elbows to lower your entire body down to the floor. Push back up to the starting high plank position. To make it easier, complete the movement from your knees or with your hands on an elevated surface. If you’re looking for a real challenge, add a clap at the top of the movement.
Main muscles: chest, shoulders, triceps, abdominals.
In a high plank position, bring your right knee to meet your left elbow. Repeat the same motion on the other side, alternating legs at preferred speed and intensity.
Main muscles: abs, lower back, shoulders, glutes
Finish off the sequence with a high plank hold and a crunches (pretty self explanatory). Then, repeat!
*Pull-ups are a great addition to the routine, though this exercise does require investing in a doorframe pull-up bar. These start at around $30 on Amazon.
words_dani calderon. photo_sydney burnett. design_keagan larkins