Legs, bums and tums – without equipment

Have you heard that fastest way to get fit is in the gym using their equipment? Nope! Your own body is just as effective at getting you into shape.

When the sky is blue, the sun is shining and the temperatures are rising, it’s not easy to force yourself into the gym. Who would prefer to sweat inside in the dark with all the muscleheads when there are so many reasons to stay outside? Thankfully there are plenty of effective exercises without equipment to help you keep fit or to get rid of the last couple of pounds of winter excesses. They are perfect for working out at home or in the fresh air, and travellers who don’t want to miss out on their fitness regime while on the road can easily do them in their hotel room.

As well as endurance sport, balanced strength training is also important. It’s the only way for motivated athletes to achieve a toned, healthy body – and it’s well known that muscles burn more calories.

90 degrees, arched back: the right way to do press-ups

The press-up is the mother of all exercises: it strengthens the entire body. Done correctly, press-ups are a workout for the shoulders, arms, back, abdominal muscles as well as the leg muscles and glutes. To ensure that you’re doing it correctly, don’t allow your back to hollow, and don’t raise your bum too high – instead, your body should be straight and your arms should be bent to 90 degrees. Beginners may prefer to keep their knees on the ground, while superfit athletes could try a one-hand press-up. But hang on a minute! You’re not finished if you managed two press-ups. You should aim for three sessions of 15 press-ups – and don’t be afraid to drop to your knees if it’s proving to be too difficult.

There are other classic exercises for training without equipment, such as squats for legs and bum, as well as sit-ups or planks for stomach muscles. There are also more difficult versions of these exercises, such as the squat on one leg or the side plank. These variants ensure that the exercise regime always remains challenging.

Safety first

With all exercises, it’s important to ensure that they are done correctly to avoid injuries or long-term joint damage. Before beginning training, it’s a good idea to look at a few videos online and to check your form in the mirror. It’s also important to avoid doing too much too soon – just because there is no equipment involved doesn’t mean that the exercise is easier. The back exercise begins on all fours, then bring opposite elbows and knees diagonally together underneath your body. It seems really easy, but after 30 repetitions – on both sides – you’ll notice that your muscles are doing some work.

There are also apps that can provide you with a variety of training sessions, including a video – and also allow you to document your progress. Variations on the press-up are also an important part of the session, such as the burpee, in which the ‘mother of all exercises’ is combined with a jump.

We’ve saved the most important thing for last: don’t forget to stretch, relax and reward yourself – for example, with a visit to the sauna or a massage at the Palace SPA. It relaxes the muscles and the next training session will be a little easier as a consequence.


As well as countless videos on YouTube, the sport magazine Fit for Fun (http://www.fitforfun.de/videos) and the lifestyle magazine Jolie (http://www.jolie.de/bildergalerien/fitness-videos-2249853.html) provide instructions for workouts at home.

Fitness apps such as Freeletics, the 7-minute-workout or RückenDoc allow you to load exercises and training schedules onto your phone. Many apps offer a limited free version, which is usually suitable for beginners.

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