Full body exercises are essential to any workout plan. Whether you’re making a full body workout plan or targeting specific muscle groups, full body exercises at home or the gym are great physical training. Find out which is the best full body exercise for you and how to do them!
In this article:
9 Full Body Exercises for Your Workout Routine
Man-makers combine a variety of exercises to engage different muscle groups per rep. This exercise will condition and strengthen your full body.
- Start in a plank position while holding dumbbells directly underneath your shoulders.
- Do one push-up with dumbbells in-hand.
- Perform a single-arm dumbbell row on one-side.
- Do another push-up with dumbbells in-hand.
- Perform another single-arm dumbbell row, this time on the opposite side.
- Jump up to bring your feet towards the dumbbells until you’re in a squat position.
- Stand tall with the dumbbells resting over your shoulders and then perform a squat. When you stand up out of the squat, press the dumbbells over your head.
- When you finish your thruster (squat-to-press), drop back down to a plank position with the dumbbells in hand.
- This is one rep of a man-maker.
Training idea: Check out the video at the end of this post for tips on how to perform the Man Maker from Evertrain Fitness Director, Sean Runyan, as well as a Man Maker workout.
Push-ups are the best exercises that require no machine or gym equipment. With a flat surface, you can strengthen your chest, back, core, butt, arm, and leg muscles. You can adjust the difficulty of this exercise by doing push-ups with your knees to make it easier or operate on an incline to make it harder. Push-ups are full body exercises you can do anywhere.
- Get into a plank position.
- Make sure your hands are directly under your shoulders.
- Lower your body down to the ground and keep your elbows close to your body.
- Push yourself back up and repeat the exercise.
- Keep tightening your abs, thighs, and glutes throughout the whole exercise.
Training idea: Perform 100 push-ups with a great form at the end of any workout to maximize muscle fatigue. Experienced athletes can work to complete as many unbroken sets as necessary to complete the 100 total. If you’re a beginner, aim to complete 10 reps every minute on the minute for 10 straight minutes.
A thruster is one of the exercises included in the man-maker. On its own, this compound exercise is used in CrossFit training. Through progression overload, a thruster can greatly improve your arm’s strength and stability.
- Stand up straight and hold two dumbbells in each hand.
- Bend your elbows to bring the dumbbells up to a resting position on your shoulders.
- Lower yourself down into a squat while the dumbbells rest on your shoulders. Keep your back as straight and upright as you can.
- Lift yourself up out of the squat until you’re standing and then press the dumbbells up over your head to full extension.
Training idea: Do 5 thrusters every minute for a 20-minute EMOM (Every Minute on the Minute). As for the dumbbells, try the 40 Rx weights for men and 20 for women.
Squats are one of the most popular lower body exercises. They also strengthen your core, back, and shoulders. You can do this exercise at home or add weights using a barbell at the gym.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your glutes engaged.
- When you lower your body, slowly move down similar to a seating position. Sit low enough where your glutes are firing and thighs are parallel with the floor.
- Make sure to keep your shoulder blades retracted, your chest up, and to engage your core.
- Stand back up to reset by pressing your feet firmly into the floor with an even distribution of weight through your mid-foot. Ensure that your knees and hips fully extend at the top.
Doing a deadlift delivers so many benefits for your workout. It’s a compound exercise that engages nine muscle groups, including your glutes, hamstrings, core, and back. It also helps correct your posture. This exercise can challenge your posterior chain strength or help your weight loss gym routine.
- Stand close to the bar with your shin pressed up against it and your feet directly under it.
- Then, bend down to hold the bar. Place your hands near your shins and keep your arms an inch beside your knees.
- Lift the bar up to your hips by bringing your chest up and focusing your weight onto your heels. Remember to tighten your abs and hips as you stand up.
- Slowly lower the bar back down and repeat this rep.
6. Box Jump
Box jumps help strengthen your lower body while affecting your core and arms as well. This exercise is also used in a lot of sports training, and it’s great for burning major calories.
- Place a sturdy box or raised surface in front of you and jump onto it.
- Make sure to jump and land with both of your feet at the same time.
- Jump back down from the box and quickly jump back up.
- Make sure to straighten your legs before proceeding to another jump.
Pull-ups are more commonly known as an upper body exercise. For a dynamic workout, you can either jump up to create momentum, do negatives, or use resistance bands to give more intensity.
- With your palms facing away from you, hang from a pull-up bar.
- Make sure to keep your chest and shoulders back, cross your feet, and squeeze your glutes.
- Pull yourself up until your chin reaches the bar and then lower your body down slowly.
8. Kettlebell Swings
Kettlebell swings are great for increasing power, muscular endurance, and aerobic capacity. This exercise is also great for fat loss.
- Start from a hinge position while holding a kettlebell between your legs.
- Let the kettlebell swing lightly forward and backward while your hips hinge, following its natural movement from extension to flexion.
- Keep swinging until the kettlebell reaches above your head and then, bring it down and through your legs and repeat by continuing to hinge through your hips.
9. Jump Lunges
Jump lunges may be the most unexpected full body exercise on this list, but this exercise will affect your whole body. It will raise your heart rate quickly, burn your muscles, and challenge your balancing skills. This makes jump lunges the perfect warm-up for any full body workout plan.
- Assume a lunge position with your knees close to the ground.
- Jump up as high as you can and switch your front and rear leg on your way down.
Training idea: An 8-minute Tabata style workout here, alternating legs every 20 seconds, would be a great way to finish off any lower-body training session.
Want a step-by-step tutorial? Check out this man maker how-to from Evertrain Fitness Director, Sean Runyan:
Full body exercises are great warm-ups for any kind of workout plan. If you’re targeting a specific muscle group for the day, you can still include one of these exercises to heat up your muscles and avoid injury. Adding these exercises to your workout is also a great way to mix up your training regiment. The best part about these full body exercises is that you can do them almost anywhere!
What full body exercises do you do during your workouts? Mention them in the comments section below!