Looking for a challenging workout, but you don’t have any equipment? The following is an excellent General Physical Preparedness (GPP), bodyweight circuit, designed for all-around athletic conditioning.
This circuit is comprised of six different exercises done in the same order every time. The goal is to finish three total circuits as fast as possible.
The six exercises are as follows:
- Half Squat Jumps: Crouch until your knees are at 90 degrees. Then drive up off the ground as high as possible. Land in an athletic jump stance. Repeat.
- Push-Ups: I will not bother explaining this one as it is such a classic.
- Cobra Raises: Lay prone with your hands out in front (like Superman) or clasped behind your head. Lift your shoulders and chest off of the ground as far as possible, Lower slowly, repeat.
- Squat Thrusts: Starting from a standing position, squat down and place your hands flat on the ground. Thrust your feet back into a push-up position, jump back to a crouch, and then stand erect. Repeat.
- Sit-ups: Any sit-up variation will do. I like elbows to knees. Lay on the ground with the knees up at 90 degrees. Place the palms of your hands on your forehead. Bring your elbows towards your knees, without pulling your knees closer to your torso. Repeat.
- Ten-Yard Shuttle Run: Sprint between two markers set ten yards apart, bending to touch the marker at each end as you turn.
To help make the training a little more specific to each individual’s fitness level, I recommend the following steps:
Begin with a pre-test to determine the correct amount of work to be done during each circuit. The pre-test itself is quite simple – go one time through the circuit and make your best effort on each exercise for 60 seconds.
After that, when you do the workout you should do 50% of your pre-test number on each exercise in each of the three circuits. For example, Athlete A completed 30 pushups in 60 seconds. For the workout athlete A would then do 15 push-ups in each of the three circuits for a total of 45 push-ups in that workout.
Once the pre-test has been completed you should attempt to complete three circuits three times a week for three weeks. After three weeks, take 3-5 days off and then re-test to establish new work loads.
This is a great workout for younger athletes as well as anyone looking to build a solid fitness base. As you progress in your fitness ability other tools may be added to make this workout more challenging such as medicine balls, resistance bands, weighted vests, sandbags etc.
Give it a try and let us know how it goes!
For more from Taku, check out his four weeks of programming and read his feature interview.