Since gyms closed across the UK in March, we’ve become pretty comfortable with home workouts. Whether you’ve fully stocked up on all the equipment and workout gear to recreate your fitness studio at home, or yoga, walking, running or cycling outdoors have become your lockdown loves, many previously avid gym-goers are embracing new ways to work out.
Because when gyms finally do reopen, they’ll be very different places – with lots of safety measures such as temperature checks, spaced out machines, and reduced changing facilities. In fact, a recent review of over 10,000 people by online running community RunRepeat found that 40% of current gym members in the UK won’t go back to their gym once it reopens.
If don’t feel ready to go back, but still miss the freedom of jumping around in your favourite HIIT, bootcamp or dance class, finding ways to maximise your home workout is key. And there’s one massive stumbling block that many of us have faced during lockdown: downstairs neighbours/parents/friends who really don’t appreciate your burpees habit.
While you may think jumping around in high-intensity moves is the quickest way to fitness, personal trainer and founder of TSC Method Tashi Skervin-Clarke explains that that’s not always the case: “Plyometric exercises such as squat jumps and lunge jumps have their place in exercise, but they are hard on your joints and if performed incorrectly or done too frequently without the correct recovery, it could result in an injury,” she says. “Jumping exercises are a great way to get your heart rate up and keep fit, but it’s not the only way to do so.
“Performing exercises that focus on time under tension is a great way to raise your heart rate, and working muscle groups back to back is not only going to make you stronger, it’s also going to increase your muscle endurance and fitness levels.”
Music to our (and our neighbours’) ears. Below, Tashi has created a workout that will whip you into shape without causing a disturbance. Now get your mat and try her upstairs-flat-friendly workout…
Tashi Skervin-Clarke’s no-jumping workout
Grab a timer, set it to 45 seconds on, 15 seconds rest, and complete 4 rounds of the following 4 exercises:
1. Tempo push-ups
You can do push-ups on your toes or your knees – choose whichever variation allows you to get your chest closest to the ground. Lower your chest for a count of 3 seconds, as soon you reach the lowest point of your push up, hold it for 3 seconds, then return back to the top for one second and start again.
2. Fast squats
Stand with your feet hip-width apart, or slightly wider if this feels more comfortable. Sit down into a squat position and make sure you look straight ahead with your shoulders relaxed. Drive back up to standing, squeeze your glutes at the top and then return back to your squat position. Try to perform these as fast as you can, without compromising your form.
3. Reverse lunges
Take a big step back with your right leg and lower your right knee towards the ground. Press your left foot into the ground and use it to help you to drive your right knee back off the floor, to return to standing. Repeat on the left side.
4.High plank hold
Get into your high plank position and focus on pulling your navel towards your spine. This will help you to maintain a neutral spine position that doesn’t see you lift your hips too high or low. Try to stack your wrists underneath your shoulders, push that ground away from you and hold!