Over the last few months, home workouts have become the norm, which mean for most of us, so has working out with little, to no equipment.
Yet, despite the initial trepidation of having to get in a decent muscle building workout, with nothing more than our own bodyweight for resistance, the reality hasn’t actually been too bad.
Dare we say, equipment free workouts have actually been pretty effective.
Even with gyms starting to re-open across the country, and with it access to the all the dumbbells, barbells and cardio machines that we’ve all so dearly missed, continuing to throw in a few workouts throughout the week, that utilise only your bodyweight, wouldn’t be such a terrible idea.
Bodyweight training is no longer considered “just for beginners”
If lockdown has done anything, it has changed the perception that lifting weights is the only way to level up in the muscle building game.
But here’s the thing, your body doesn’t know the difference between lifting a dumbbell, barbell or your bodyweight.
Resistance is resistance, and as you may have discovered, there’s no limit to how challenging body weight workouts can be, thanks to their endless variations.
If anything, being forced to strip your training back to basics, has provided the opportunity to add more notches to your (muscle building) belt.
It’s allowed you to become more in-tune with your body, how it moves, which areas are your weakest links and which movements come more naturally to you.
Knowledge, that is only going to benefit you in your quest to build muscle.
Benefits of going equipment free
Before we get into the best equipment free workouts, first lets have a look at why they should still be an integral part of your routine.
No more waiting around
Gyms may not be as busy upon reopening as they were back at the start of 2020, but it’s still inevitable that you are going to, at some point, be waiting around to use a piece of equipment.
With an equipment free workout, you can just rock up, find a free area in the gym and its yours for the duration of your workout.
Work the whole body at once
Unlike conventional gym workouts where you may only train one or two muscle groups, hitting a bodyweight workout usually means targeting your whole body in one fell swoop.
Training this way can reduce your weekly workouts in the gym from 5 down to 3 (which in the current state of affairs is probably a good idea), whilst still getting in a decent amount of volume per muscle group.
Lower risk of injury
Whilst injuries are still possible with bodyweight workouts, they are a lot less frequent than with conventional weightlifting.
Bodyweight training is easier on your joints and supporting ligaments are reduces the chances of poor form, which can occur when performing exercises under excessively heavy loads.
12 of the best equipment free workouts
With all that said and done, below are our top 12 equipment free, bodyweight only workouts that will have you tapping into multiple energy systems, testing your muscular endurance and strength all at once.
#1 20-1 ladder
- Press ups
- Jump squats
- Sit ups
#2 200 jump squats
*every 2 minutes including (0.00) perform x 10 burpees
- Press ups
- Back extensions
- Sit ups
- Air squats
#4 AMRAP (30min)
- 5 x jump squat
- 10 x air squat
- 20 x jumping lunge
#5 For time
200 press ups
*every time you rest perform a 20 second hollow hold or plank
#6 EMOM on Loop
- 1 burpee
- 1 press up
- 1 squat
*add additional rep each minute
**when you can no longer perform prescribed number of reps in the minute drop back down to one rep (repeat x2)
#7 EMOM (30min)
- 30 second plank
- 30 seconds leg raises
- 30 seconds rest
#8 AMRAP (20 min)
1,2,3,4,5,6 reps etc… of
- Pike press
- Spider man press up
- Air squat
#9 “Loredo” (modified)
6 rounds of:
- 24 air squats
- 24 press ups
- 24 walking lunges
- 1 minute high knees
Perform 1 burpee
- Each minute add 1 additional rep and push for as many rounds as possible
#11 For time
- Handstand push up (or pike press)
- Pistol squat (or lunge jump)
- V ups
Complete all 32 rounds of:
- Tabata push up
- Tabata air squat
- Tabata sit up
- Tabata down ups