Posted on 06 February 2018
If you’re keen to start a new fitness programme but you don’t want to fork out lots of money on the gym or want to avoid being tied into a contract, your best bet is to do at-home workouts.
If this is you and you’re not sure where to start, here are some highly effective fat-burning at-home workouts that are guaranteed to get you results – all without the need for equipment.
Not sure how to do the moves? Here’s how…
How to Do a Push-Up
Set your hands shoulder width apart with your palms down and your fingers pointing away from you. Your head should be looking slightly ahead of you – not straight down at the floor, as this would curve your spine; your body needs to make a straight line.
Your shoulders should be over your wrists and you can either be up on your toes (feet together or shoulder width apart) or on your knees, depending on your strength.
There is no shame in doing a push-up on your knees – you will quickly and easily build up the strength to do a push-up on your toes.
How to Do Tricep Dips
Sit on the floor with your feet on the floor and your knees bent. Your hands should be behind you with the palms down and your fingers pointing towards your body.
Next, lift your hips off the floor and then slowly lower your body as close to the floor as possible. You should feel this in your triceps, which are the muscles at the back of your arm.
The further away you move your feet, the more difficult this move will be.
The more advanced version would be doing the same thing with your hands on one chair and your feet on another chair – this allows you to get deeper into the move.
How to Do Mountain Climbers
Take the same position as a push-up but instead of pushing down, your upper body will remain still while you alternate bringing each knee up to your chest. Think running on the spot in this position and you can’t go far wrong.
How to Do a Plank
There are a few variations of the plank, but for a beginner, take the same position as you would a push-up and hold it for as long as you can.
You should be engaging your core and the line of your body should be straight, so keep your hips low but don’t dip them. As with a push-up, you need your shoulders over your wrists and your head looking just in front of you rather than down.
How to Do Commandos
Take the position of the push-up or plank, then, with alternate arms, go down on to one forearm and then the other. You will now be in a straight line on both forearms. Next, push back up onto your palms and bring your other arm up to return to your original position. Repeat and remember to alternate the arms you push yourself up with.
How to Do Diamond Push-Ups
This is more advanced than a normal push-up, but is highly effective.
Take the position of the regular push-up as a good starting point but instead of your arms being shoulder width apart with your shoulders over your wrists, your hands should be in a diamond shape in the middle of your chest. Push down as you would for a regular push-up and return to the starting position.
You can also do this move on your knees, but remember to keep your body as straight as possible and make your chest go as low to the ground as you can.
How to Do Bear Crawls
Begin standing, then lower yourself into push-up or plank position. Next, extend your arm in front of you and ‘crawl’ a few paces forward, but keep your feet where they are. Then ‘crawl’ back and return to your standing position. Jump 180 degrees and repeat on the other side.
How to Do Plank Taps
Begin as you would with a plank, but this time, instead of keeping your body still, lift your right arm and tap your left shoulder, then return to the floor. Repeat with your left arm to your right shoulder and continue through your reps.
Try not to rock your hips: your body should be static with just your arms moving.
How to Do Squats
With your legs shoulder width apart and your feet pointing forward (or slightly out, if that’s more comfortable), you can slowly lower yourself down. Think of it like sitting on a chair, but you need to keep your back straight, with a neutral spine. Remember to keep your chest and shoulders up and ensure your knees aren’t dropping inwards or knocking.
As you stand back up, remember to engage your glutes and squeeze at the top.
How to Do Curtsy Lunges
Start by standing and then take your left leg and step behind your right leg so your thighs are crossed – both knees will be bent like you’re curtsying. Then repeat on the other side.
How to Do Jump Squats
Do as you would for regular squats but instead of slowly lowering yourself up, jump up and softly land back in the squat position. These squats burn a lot more than regular ones; it’s important to remember your form in a plyometric move (moves that use explosive jumping) as you could hurt yourself if you land incorrectly.
How to Do Leg Raises
Take the tabletop position, or go down on all fours, then extend one leg and lift it up behind you. Next, slowly lower it and return it to its original position before repeating with the other leg.
Keep your hips straight and ensure you don’t tilt when you lift one leg up.
Your shoulders should be over your wrists to support your weight.
How to Do Sumo Squats
Take a wider stance than for regular squats with your feet pointing outwards, then, as you would with a regular squat, slowly lower your bum and hips down, with your chest and shoulders up, your back straight and your spine neutral. This one gets to the inner thighs.
How to Do Fire Hydrants
Not the most ladylike of moves, but take the tabletop position, do as you would for a leg raise and then, with the leg still bent, lift it out to the side and then return to the start position. Then do the same with the opposite leg. You may look like a little dog lifting its legs for a wee – and to be honest, that’s the best way to describe it – but this move will target the upper outer thigh and glute.
How to Do Glute Bridges
Lie down on the floor with your legs extended in front of you. Next, bend your legs and then lowly lift your glutes off the floor and thrust into the air. (Again, not ladylike, but effective!) Remember to engage your glutes and tense them when you get to the top, then release, lower them down and repeat.
How to Do Walking Lunges
Begin with your feet shoulder width apart and your hands on your hips. Take a step forward and lower your body to your hips; your posture must remain upright and your knee must be in line with your ankle, but not too far over or in front of it. Next, drive through your heel so you step forward with the other foot and repeat.
How to Do Bicycle Crunches
Lie down on your back with your elbows out and hands touching your ears, then lift your legs so they are bent at a raised 90-degree angle. Next, extend one leg and bring the other slightly closer to you; as you do this, take the alternate elbow to meet the knee before returning to the starting position and repeating with the other leg and elbow. You’ll basically feel like you’re cycling, but lying down.
How to Do Jack Knives
Lie on the floor or mat with your legs extended in front of you and your arms extended behind you. Next, lift both legs and bend them towards the centre of your torso and at the same time bring your elbows to meet the knees. Slowly return to your start position and repeat.
Don’t forget to engage your core!
How to Do V Sit-Ups
Start in the seated position and then extend your arms out in front of you, shoulder width apart. Next, lift your bent legs off the floor and hold. You should be creating a V shape with your body.
How to Do Sit-Ups
For classic sit-ups, begin by lying on the floor with your legs bent out in front of you. With your arms across your chest, slowly lift your torso and shoulders off the ground to meet where your knees are bent, then lower back to the start position. Repeat through your reps.
It’s important to engage your core in this move so you’re not pulling through your back or hip flexors, and nor are you using the momentum of the movement to throw your torso forward.
How to Do Bum Raises
Lie on your back with your legs out straight in front of you. Next, slowly raise your legs to be straight up in the air; when they are fully extended, raise your bum off the ground and slowly lower back down before returning your legs to the start position. You should engage your core to avoid hurting your back in this move.
How to Do Heel Touches
Lie on your back with your legs bent in front of you and your feet shoulder width apart. Next, extend your arm and stretch to touch the back of your heel, then repeat with the other arm and heel. Your shoulders should remain on the floor and you should be looking straight up at the ceiling to avoid neck strain.
How to Do Toe Touches
As you would with heel touches, lie on your back but this time extend both legs up into the air and hold them in this position. Next, reach out to touch your toes without lifting your body too far off the ground; you should feel this move in your abdomen as you engage your core.
Form is so important when performing moves, so if there is something you do not understand, watch some online tutorials first to make sure you’re doing it right. Remember: if it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t, so take a break and listen to your body.