Running Series, Episode 3: Bodyweight Strength Exercises

Running Series, Episode 3: Bodyweight Strength Exercises

In the last episode we covered why strength training is so important, but now what exercises should you do exactly? And what if you don't have access to the gym or are not ready for weights? Kevin has put together a list of eight essential bodyweight strength exercises that you can do at home. Equipment required - a resistance band loop, a large yoga ball, and a box or step stool. If you do not have a band or ball at home, you can find both for pretty cheap online - both the band and the ball can be found on Amazon. If you want to use what we have in the clinic, we use Theraband bands and a Trideer ball.

For the exercises - complete 3 sets of 5 to 10 repetitions of the following exercises (and both sides when necessary), two times per week:
  • Press up
  • Bridge leg extension
  • Hip flexion band
  • Hamstring curl with ball
  • Side plank
  • Side step with band
  • Lateral step down
  • Running man

Once you've mastered these exercises and want to take them to the next level, add in weights where you can at home or in the gym.

To see Kevin demonstrate each movement, go to our YouTube channel or continue reading on to learn how to do each movement:

  • Press up: Lie facedown on an even surface. Push up just the upper part of your body from the hips up - not a full push up from your knees or feet. Lower back down.
  • Bridge leg extension: Move into a reverse bridge position with your shoulders on the floor. Lift and straighten one leg at a time to be parallel with your other leg.
  • Hip flexion band: Place a band around your feet and lie on your back. Drive one knee back toward your head. Bring the leg back down.
  • Hamstring curl: Place both feet on top of the ball and lift you butt and back off of the ground. Engage your core to pull the ball toward you. Push the ball out again to return to the starting position.
  • Side plank: Lie on your side with your upper arm directly below your shoulder and at a 90 degree angle at the elbow. Your body should be straight except for your legs bent at a 90 degree angle at the knees. Lift your body up, hold for a few seconds, and lower back down.
  • Side step: Place the loop band above your ankles around your shins. Side step one way then return in the other direction.
  • Lateral step down: Stand on your box or step stool with just one leg. Slowly lower your other foot to the floor then raise yourself back up.
  • Running man: Bend your supporting leg slightly as your working leg is brought backwards into almost a high lunge. Draw your working leg forward in a high knee position and straighten your supporting leg. Use opposite arm to leg to drive the knee up.
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