• Jon Reid

Top 7 Bodyweight Exercises

These bodyweight exercises are great for warming up, improving mobility and building muscle. The majority are used in personal training programs in some capacity.


I like these for improving mobility whilst also giving your mid-section and shoulders a little bit of stimulation. They are best done either as part of a warm up or as a mobiliser between other exercises.



Rollups, or rolling pistols, are good for balance, coordination and warming up for squats. Use rollups as part of a warm up, conditioning or as a stand alone exercise depending on your ability and goal. Make it tougher by standing up on one leg.

Roll ups

Parallette Bar Push-ups

These allow you to go deeper than a regular push-up and are a great way to work towards dips. The principles of a regular push-up apply, try and keep your forearms vertical as you descend (although they will eventually go past vertical as you go deeper). These are a popular movement in ‘street style’ workouts; growing up on the streets taught me this.

Parallette bar push ups

Hollow Body Hold

Hollow bodies are the ultimate core strength exercise. Work your way through the progressions in the video, start with two or three sets of 10 seconds and work up to holding for 30 seconds.

Hollow body

Overhead Squats With a Band/Stick

Make bodyweight squats a little bit more difficult and learn to maintain an upright posture whilst tying in shoulder stability and your upper back muscles at the same time. Pull the band apart to maintain tension and go for higher reps (15-20). Expect to feel your upper back muscles and shoulders after two or three sets. A broomstick can also be used.

Unloaded overhead squat


Upper body strength, faster at sprinting, chin-ups are a phenomenal way to develop an athletic physique. Manipulate the exercise by going super slow on the way down (altering the tempo), holding half way down (arms at 90°) or performing 1 and ¼ reps. If you can’t do a full chin-up, use a band to give you some assistance. Otherwise, jump up, grab the bar, squeeze your glutes and abs and pull yourself up.

Chin up


Sprinting is quick, easy, burns fat, makes you a better athlete, requires zero equipment and is one of the more enjoyable forms of conditioning, dare I say even fun!? Running up a hill is particularly beneficial; check out hill sprints for more about this. Pick a distance, say 20-50m, run as fast as you can, walk back, do it again nine times. There you have a fat blasting session that will take only 20 minutes.



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