Beginner Guides Cheltenham Club

Fri 4 Sep, 2015

The Best Exercises to do in a 20 Minute Session


For many of us, time has become a luxury.

It would be great if we all had a spare few hours each day to perform our workout at our own leisurely pace; but in the modern world, unfortunately that’s not always possible.
Sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and get it in when you can. Thankfully, this workout will help you do just that.
We’ve carefully selected five calisthenics exercises that will target your whole body and require minimal equipment. Although it’s just twenty minutes long, it’ll probably feel like an eternity…

Let’s get to it.

1. The Full Burpee

The burpee is regarded as the king of the calisthenics conditioning exercises. It separates the men and women from the boys and girls.

Start the exercise in a deep squat position with your hands on the floor in front of you. Sprawl your feet back to a pushup position, perform one pushup, and then return your feet to the deep squat. From the deep squat, jump up in the air as high as you can. Rinse and repeat.

• Beginner: Perform the pushup part on your knees.
• Advanced: Make the pushup explosive, and even add a clap.

2. Bodyweight Row

The bodyweight row is a great exercise for engaging the core and mid back muscles, essential for maintaining good posture.
To perform the row, position yourself hanging underneath a horizontal bar, TRX, or even the underside of a table (make sure it’s stable). Keeping your body straight and shoulders retracted, pull yourself up. Pause at the top, before lowering yourself slowly.

• Beginner: Elevate the bar/TRX and adjust your feet position so that your body is more upright.
• Advanced: Take a wider grip, or lift one leg off the floor.

3. Cossack Squats

Cossack squats require a blend of strength, flexibility, balance and co-ordination.

Start in a stance that’s slightly wider than shoulder width with one foot turned out to the side and your weight pressing through the heel of that foot. Keeping that knee straight, squat down towards the other side. Keep your core engaged throughout the movement and lower yourself down as deep as comfortable, before contracting your glutes to return to standing.

• Beginner: Support yourself with your hands on the floor or a table.
• Advanced: Add weight with a weighted vest or kettlebell.

4. Plyometric Lunges

Plyometric lunges are another great exercise for developing full body strength and power.

Starting with your feet hip width apart, step forward with one leg and lower your hips down until both of your knees are bent at roughly ninety degrees. Ensure that your back knee hovers just above the ground and that your front knee is in line with your ankle.

Keep your core engaged, and push your weight through your front heel as you explode upwards, switching your stance mid air.

• Beginner: Perform the lunges without a jump.
• Advanced: Add a weighted vest.

5. Mountain Climbers

Mountain climbers are a great conditioning exercise that will help you to develop a strong core and lower body.

Starting in a pushup position, bring one leg forwards until the knee is under the hip, so you are resting in a deep lunge. To execute the mountain climber, switch the position of your legs explosively, keeping your weight supported by your hands.

• Beginner: Shorten the range of motion.
• Advanced: Add a weighted vest or extend the range of motion.

The 20 Minute Workout

Perform ten reps of each exercise in a four minute circuit, followed by a one-minute rest. Repeat three more times for a brutal, twenty minute, full-body workout.