Yes, You Can Get a Killer Cardio Workout at Home — Start with These 10 Moves

Yes, You Can Get a Killer Cardio Workout at Home — Start with These 10 Moves

When you’re looking for options to increase strength and endurance, lose weight, boost energy, improve respiratory function, and fuel heart health, the good news is that you don’t have to go far — doing cardio at home can give you a major boost for all those benefits.

“Being able to take a break from work and get some movement into your day is crucial,” says personal trainer Ben Walker, C.P.T., owner of Anywhere Fitness. “With cardio at home, you can tailor your approach to what you need and most important, what you find enjoyable.”

Looking for inspiration for your next at-home cardio workout? Start with these 10 moves.

Mix in strength and core training to your cardio workouts with Openfit’s bodyweight-only program Just Bring Your Body! Get moving here for free.

 

1. Jumping Jacks

cardio at home - jumping jacks

  • Stand tall with your feet together and your hands at your sides.
  • Jump your feet out wide as you sweep your arms out to the side, bringing your hands overhead.
  • Land softly and reverse the move, jumping back to the starting position, and immediately into your next jump.

 

2. Squat Thrust

squat thrust demonstration | cardio at home

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, bend your knees and push your hips back as you lower your body into a quarter squat, or athletic stance.
  • Place your hands on the floor in front of you at shoulder width.
  • Keeping your back flat and core engaged, jump your feet back to a push-up position: arms and body straight, hands in line with and underneath your shoulders.
  • Reverse the sequence to return to the starting position.

 

3. Mountain Climbers

  • Assume a push-up position: feet together, core engaged, body straight from head to heels, hands in line with and underneath your shoulders.
  • Draw your right knee quickly toward your chest, making sure to keep your back flat, your butt down, and the rest of your body stationary.
  • Keeping your hips as low as possible, quickly switch the position of your feet. That’s one rep.
  • Continue alternating sides, performing equal reps on each side.

 

4. Star Jumps

star jump demonstration | cardio at home

  • Start in a quarter-squat position with your back flat, feet together, and palms touching the sides of your lower legs.
  • Jump up, raising your arms and legs out to your sides (your body should form an “X” in mid-air).
  • Land softly with your feet together and immediately lower yourself back into the starting position.

 

5. Burpees

  • Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart and your arms at your sides.
  • Bend your knees, hinge at your hips, and squat down, placing both palms on the floor.
  • Jump your feet back to a push-up position: hands and balls of your feet on the floor and your body straight from head to heels, core engaged and back straight.
  • For an advanced option, add a push-up: Lower your torso until your chest is a few inches from the floor, and then quickly push back up.
  • Jump your feet back to your hands, and then explode upward, jumping into the air.
  • Land softly and immediately begin your next rep.

 

6. Bear Crawl

  • Get on all fours with your hands directly under your shoulders, and your knees bent 90 degrees below your hips and hovering a few inches above the ground. This is the starting position.
  • Keeping your back flat and core engaged, move forward using a “cross-crawl” pattern, simultaneously moving opposite hands and feet together (i.e., left hand and right foot, right hand and left foot).
  • Continue moving forward with opposite hands and feet in unison for the desired number of steps, then reverse the movement to work your way back.

 

7. Pike Plank

  • Start in a plank position, with your hands on the ground directly below your shoulders and your feet hip-width apart.
  • Focus on creating a straight line from the top of your head to your heels, without letting your hips drop or your lower back arch excessively. Draw your belly-button in toward your spine, and squeeze your core to maintain the plank position.
  • Keeping your core engaged, drive your hips up and back into an upside-down “V” position — similar to downward dog, with heels up. While in the pike position, position your head in line with your arms, with your gaze looking through your legs.
  • Pause when you reach your full range of motion, and then lower back to plank.

 

8. Dumbbell Thrusters

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart, holding a pair of dumbbells in front of your shoulders with your palms facing each other.
  • Keeping your abs engaged and elbows up, push your hips back, bend your knees, and lower your body into a squat.
  • Drive through your heels, extend your hips, and, as you straighten your legs, press the dumbbells directly above your shoulders.
  • Lower the dumbbells to shoulder height as you return to a squat.

 

9. Cross Crunches

cross crunch demonstration | cardio at home

  • Start by lying on your back on the ground, bend your knees and keep your feet on the floor.
  • Place your hands behind your head and keep your elbows flared to the side.
  • Begin the motion by lifting your shoulder blades off the floor and reach your right hand toward the outside of your left ankle.
  • Focus on exhaling as you curl to maximize your abdominal contraction.
  • Return to your starting position, before going to the opposite side for your set amount of repetitions.

 

10. Inchworm

inchworm demonstration | cardio at home

  • Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart and your arms at your sides.
  • Keeping your core engaged and back flat, hinge forward at your hips and place both palms on the floor. Bend your knees slightly if necessary.
  • Walk your hands forward until you assume a high-plank position. Position your wrists directly under your shoulders. Keep your body straight from head to heels.
  • Reverse the movement, walking your hands back toward your feet, to return to the starting position.

 

Like These Moves? You’ll Love Just Bring Your Body

Putting together your own program of different at-home cardio moves is always an option, but it’s also helpful to have an experienced trainer do it for you. How about four of them?

In the Openfit program Just Bring Your Body, four of the world’s best bodyweight trainers offer a 60-day program that blends cardio, strength training, and core work. No equipment necessary, and you’ll definitely get your cardio at home fix.

 

cardio at home pin image

kate bayless author

About

Kate Bayless is a Southern California-based writer and editor focusing on health and wellness, beauty, fitness, travel, and parenting. She has a decade of bylines for outlets including Men's Health, Prevention, and Parents magazine. Follow her on Twitter.

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