Updated: Mar 9, 2021
Body weight training is amazing. All you need is you. It can be done any place and anytime. No equipment needed, though you can use the likes of bars and benches.
There is a lot of talk now about functional training (that's a blog for another day). There are few things more functional than manipulating your own body weight. The only problem with this is that that is very difficult for most people.
Although typical body weight movements are straight forward, such as push ups and squats, these are also movements that people struggle with. I have been training clients for around 5 years now and I get very few people who can do basic movements well first time. Absolutely nothing wrong with this. This is why you got a personal trainer in the first place.
But due to the recent situation that is going on in the world, we are no longer able to go to the gym and train as we are used to. So home workouts are the new norm. And Body weight exercises are a massive part of that as there is no equipment needed.
So now you have having to rely on training, using pretty much your own body, more than ever. Which is theory is great, in reality not so much.
As I previously mentioned, a lot of body weight exercises are difficult. This then limits what you are actually able to do. Which if you had a trainer at hand who could scale back some exercises or have a plan to build strength so that you can do a push up for example, this isn't a massive problem. When you are stuck on your own, it is.
I want you to bear in mind, that I am writing this thinking of Average Joe. The vast majority of the people who come to me have no fitness background, no idea about exercises or techniques and are looking to lose weight. Which I believe a lot of people can relate to.
Your typical "gym rat" might not struggle with these exercises because they spend all their time in the gym working out and have built up the strength to do these exercises.
But the average person will no doubt struggle with a lot of body weight exercises.
Most of us can squat in some shape or form (and if you can't I seriously suggest you book in with me asap). So body weight training for that for the average person should be ok.
But what about push ups? To the regular gym goer, probably not the most difficult exercise. But to some, you might as well ask them to lift half a ton. Most people will be able to train the same muscles using light dumbbells or a chest press machine.
This is great for building up strength. But if you can't do that, you're stuck with your own body weight. So training those push muscles becomes difficult. And then there is there is the dreaded pull ups.
Probably the exercise that most people in my experience can't do. If you can do them, they are one of the best exercise you can do. I highly recommend them.
But if a lot of people out there struggle with push ups, what are they gonna be like at the pull up bar. And I'm just talking about pull ups/chin ups.
I'm nowhere near thinking of exercise like muscle ups. Again, if you have a trainer, they should be able to help teach you how you can build up to doing pull ups. But you are on your own.
So in just a couple of examples, I have high lighted that only using your body is it so simple. The reason I want to high light this, is that I have a body weight program available.
No equipment needed except for a chair or step. But as I was writing it, I was thinking of all the different body weight exercises and how I was going to structure it.
The more I thought about it, the more I realised that a lot of people won't be able to do some of the exercises. I really had to think hard about how I was going to do whole body workouts only using your body, and that the average person can do.
I believe I did a good job in the end. But it really opened my eyes that, yes body weight training is great. I advise more people to try and use there body more. Doing different types of push ups, pulling variations and much more.
The only issue is, if you don't have a decent base level of strength and fitness, you are going to find it very difficult. Now there are people who only do body weight training and have only ever trained that way. So it can be done.
I wanted to address this because clients and friends have asked me if they should by equipment for home should they just do body weight exercises.
It really all comes down to what you're able to do. If you can bang out different types of push ups and pull like there's no tomorrow, great. If you can't, then I think you're gonna find it tough to get by on just body weight along.
If you are only using your body weight and don't have access to equipment, check out my body weight only program. Nothing to difficult in it and it is set up to increase you reps and sets as you go. So if you are struggling, please go check it out.