The best strength training exercises…outside the gym

Person riding a bicycle

Most of us often, perhaps always think of the gym at the mention of strength training. A lot of trainers actually build muscle within the confines of a gym. However, wouldn’t it be more fun if the same were possible outside the gym? Great news, strength training is actually possible outdoors and it involves some pretty simple but effective exercises. We take a look at the best outdoor alternatives to training in the gym.

1.   The double bridge

This exercise requires two people since it basically requires pressing your soles against the other person’s. Start by lying flat, face up and opposite each other. Each of you should then bend one leg at the knee and flat to the ground (one person does this with the right leg while your partner bends the left knee). With the other leg, press you sole against that of your partner and try to extend the legs upwards without bending them. Do this while slightly raising your hips, hold for two seconds then lower them. Doing this will exert a downward force on your other leg. Repeat the exercise for a full set. Once done with the reps, switch legs.

2.   Bicycle crunch

Just as it sounds, the exercise mimics the movement your legs would be making while riding a bicycle, only that this time you will be lying flat on the ground and there will be no bicycle (not a real one anyway).

Start the exercise with both partners lying on their backs flat to the ground. Press your soles against those of your partner (both legs). Lift them off the ground while at the same time lifting your own shoulders and head off the ground. Pull one knee towards your chest while you lift and try to bring your opposite elbow toward the knee. Hold this for two seconds then repeat for the opposite leg and arm. This exercise will help tighten your abs.

3.   Dip and curl

The dip and curl exercise can be done by a single person. However, it does seem more fun with a friend by. Start this off by sitting on the extreme edge of an outdoor bench- preferably the park variety-. Now grasp the edge of the bench at the sides of your body. While keeping your back side as close to the bench as possible lift yourself off the bench and move your feet out. Extend one leg frontwards and place its heel on the ground flat. While at this position, bend your elbow and lower your body all this while contracting your abs and pulling the knee in the direction of your chest. Hold for two seconds then push your body back up. Do five reps of these to complete a single set.

This exercise helps shape your thighs, abs and triceps.

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