There are numerous ways of engaging in physical activity where time limits, financial and physical limitations are matters of concern. Below are great workouts centred around the home that provide minimal financial outlay, and offer alternative means to working out at the local gym.
To underestimate the usefulness of the trampoline in your back garden or think trampolining is only meant for kids is pretty much a felony.
Having a bounce regularly and varying the moves can be fun, not to mention the zero-impact stress on the joints and body as a whole.
Trampolining has been found to be the most effective exercise yet devised by man based on several scientific studies. Check out the eight (8) scientifically proven Health Benefits of Exercise post for more details.
Making time for some forms of exercises may seem daunting from the outset, but there are indirect ways to get round this issue. Incorporating cycling into your daily routine is a practical and viable approach to tackling this type of exercise. You could opt for a quick spin on the bike to get around town, perform errands and shop instead of the usual driving.
It is fairly understood that cruising in town in that convertible with alloy wheels and personalized license plate can be a thrill sometimes….but hey, who says you can’t enjoy a bike ride too? The occasional standing while cycling and blasting away has the ‘feel good factor’ to it, plus you sure look smokin’ in your gear, goggles and helmet alike.
With regard to work, commuting by bike on a daily basis is a great opportunity you should willingly embrace. It could be likened to killing two massive birds with considerably small stone, i.e., serving as a form of transport and contributing to your general well being.
 Skipping / Jumping
The jump rope is inexpensive, portable and convenient to have as rope skipping can be done virtually anywhere. “…but skipping is for children”, I hear you cry. Well, wait till you learn how popular it is among boxers, wrestlers, tennis, badminton players etc, amateurs and pros alike.
It is basically a staple in the training programs of these super fit sportsmen. Knowing the proper technique different footwork patterns and routines are pretty easy and it is appropriate for a wide range of ages as well as fitness levels. Do remember to chant some jump-rope rhymes whilst you’re at it, as this could spur you on a great deal.
 Jogging / Running
Jogging is another effective way of getting fit and can be done anywhere and at one’s convenience. For starers, you may want to find safe routes and if possible, a jogging buddy to accompany you as this is a good motivator and can be so fun.
While running, hydrate your body when thirsty, and warm down gradually to allow the heart rate, blood supply and muscles to return to normal when you’re done.
It’s boogie time! Dancing is a great way to show unwanted pounds the door. It is the sort of activity one is more likely to stick to due to the fun element. It is amazing how much heat the body generates from dancing, helping to burn calories in a fun-loving fashion.
For some it is salsa, c-rock, break dance or the moonwalk and for others, it may be zumba, tango or the dougie.
Just crank that up-tempo music, simply do your own thing and let’s call it “freestyling”.
You may want to spice up your exercise regimen with some hooping at some stage, a great easy full body workout which burns up to about 350 calories per hour. It is inexpensive, interesting, reduces stress and can be done anywhere at home, even while watching TV.
The waist and abs are known to be the most problematic areas thinking about bulges, love handles etc. To a great extent, the hula hoop works precisely around the midriff section and great results can be achieved within a considerably small space of time.
There are variations to hooping such as using the arms, hand and legs. Weighted hoops are recommended for adults and beginners as they move slower around you.
 Basket Ball – Shooting Hoops
Hang on, do I spot a b-ball hoop hanging off the garage door? Wow, shooting hoops is a great way to exercise, release stress, an inexpensive sport and the kind that welcomes a wide age range.
Get out of your comfort zone and work up a sweat by shooting hoops right in your driveway while counting how many you can dunk.
 Walking / Power Walking
If you know your neighbourhood inside out, finding a local trail shouldn’t be a problem at all. Taking regular walks down this trail should be a no-brainer be it solo strolls or if joined by a fellow stroller of the four-legged variety, i.e, your canine companion.
Having a walking exercise program as a part of your daily routine would be helpful, given the benefits gained and the fact that it does not require any heroic effort. A pedometer is a handy device to have as it helps monitor the daily number of steps taken.
You could take it up a notch by engaging in power-walking at some point in time, the techniques of which are very straightforward. Yes indeed, the exaggerated arm swing with the chin up in the stratosphere may somewhat appear ridiculous to passers-by; however, this should be the least of your worries simply because the end justifies the means. They should check you out a few more weeks down the line and let’s see who has the last laugh. Power walking is in fact likened to doing sit-ups, stood up.
 Dumbbell Workouts
One must-have home exercise equipment is a set of dumbbells. They are dynamic, flexible and help tone, strengthen and build each major muscle group in the body.
They are safe when used correctly and enable you to work through a great range of movement.
It is recommended that you do some warming up exercises prior to dumbbell workouts and to always start with a light weight.
 Workout Combo
Finally, it goes without saying that some exercises make us all take a whole trip down memory lane…….back in school when physical education was fun for all, even more so for those who hated other subjects like math and always waited endlessly to be saved by the bell.
Well, you can rest assured that these exercises could be fun again, this time, in the comfort of your own home:
- knee lifts
- leg lifts
- jumping jacks
- step exercises
What more could one ask for? Just close your eyes for a moment and recall how Mr. Hooper (for some strange reason most PE teachers tend to bear this name) used to combine these activities during lessons….take it on from there and you’re bound to achieve great results.