Body Weight Exercises


by ACE-Certified Personal Trainer in St. Louis, Brentwood, and Clayton, MO, Maurie Cofman

  Are you short on time and find it hard to get a workout in? Then do body weight exercises. Nothing works better for convenience, time and budget than body weight exercises. Whether, you travel a lot, are crunched for time or just don’t feel like going to the gym, try this total body work out all done with no other equipment but your own body.  All of these exercises should be done in a slow and controlled movement to keep from using momentum to perform the exercise.

  PUSHUPS:  works chest, shoulders, triceps, biceps and back,  plus your core.



Start in a plank position, arms just a little wider than your shoulders.  Bring your whole body down until you almost touch the ground and then back up.  Be sure you don’t hike your hips, or sag your back–try to stay in one long line.  Perform 3 sets of 12-15 reps.

  To regress or modify:   perform the pushup from your knees, but again stay in one long line. To progress or make it more difficult:   Bring one leg off the ground for half the time and then lift the other leg off the ground the other half.

  SQUATS:  works quadriceps, hamstrings, gluteus maximus and minimus



  Start with your feet shoulder width apart, arms out in front at eye level.  Shift your hips back and squat to parallel making sure your knees don’t go past your toes.  Keep your head up and shoulders down and back to keep your back from rounding.  Perform 3 sets of 12-15 reps.

  To regress or modify:   “sit” on a wall in a 90 degree angle for 30 secs. again making sure your knees don’t go past your toes.
To progress or make it more difficult:   Perform the squat bringing your gluteus past parallel almost touching the ground, again making sure your knees don’t go past your toes.

  CRUNCHES:  works the entire rectus abdominis.



In a supine position with your fists on your forehead, crunch your upper and lower body together into the middle, making sure you don’t touch your toes to the ground.  Perform 3 sets of 12-15 reps.

  To add variety and incorporate the obliques, crunch to one side and then to the other.

    TOE RAISES:   works the lower leg – gastrocnemius and soleus.



With your feet hip width apart, flex your toes to rise up on your toes and back down again. Perform  3 sets of 12-15 reps.

  To add an aerobic component and make it more cardio, do all four exercises in a circuit fashion with a 1 minute jog in place in between.

  And there you have it–a great way to exercise your entire body when traveling or for lack of time.  Please contact me, Maurie Cofman, CMES, CES, TBMM-CES, Personal Trainer, Certified Medical Exercise Specialist, Health Coach and Corrective Exercise Specialist in the St. Louis, Brentwood, and Clayton, MO area. 



maurie@mauriecofman.com