Are you looking to become stronger and fitter?
Exercise is essential to maintaining your health, especially as you age. If you’re new to lifting weights, it can be challenging to know where to begin.
Fortunately, you don’t need to be a gym veteran to make sure that you’re lifting weights. You can learn how to use free weights by following these exercise tips.
See our guide below to learn how to get strong and fit in the new year with our favorite free weight exercises to try in the home gym.
Squats are a great addition to your exercise routine because they target many muscle groups, including the quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, core, and back. Squats also improve balance and stability and have the potential to increase your explosive power.
In addition to the traditional back squat and goblet squat, there are other ways to do this exercise. Click here for more info.
Box squats are an efficient and effective movement to include in your routine as they involve almost all major muscle groups. By sitting down and up from a chair, box, or step, the individual is working their quads, hamstrings, glutes, hip flexors, and abdominals. Not only does this compound movement challenge major muscle groups at once, but it also helps improve balance and coordination.
Box squats also help train the body to keep the proper form of fatigue, resulting in better performance. The versatility of this exercise makes it a great way to improve strength, power, and endurance.
Overhead squats are a great free-weight exercise to add to your workout routine. These are great for strengthening your core and improving your flexibility. They involve holding a barbell above your head with your arms straight and then squatting as you lower it.
Start with a lightweight and practice proper form. Start by doing a few sets of 8–10 reps and do not rush when performing the exercise. Overhead squats are a great compound exercise that works your lower body and requires only your body weight.
Jump squats are a great free-weight exercise to add to your workout routine. Start with your feet hip-width apart and your arms at your sides. Squat down and, as you rise, jump up off the ground as high as you can.
Bend your knees and hips to absorb the shock when you land. The landing should be silent. Ensure you land in the original squat position. Repeat this motion for 10 to 20 repetitions, with a 30-second rest between sets. Benefits of jump squats include increased calf strength, increased power and strength in your legs and core, increased agility and coordination, and increased cardiovascular endurance.
One-legged Squats are an important free-weight exercise to add to any workout routine; this exercise works your coordination, balance, and core muscle strength. You begin with one foot being planted on the ground and it extends your other foot in front of you.
With your arm weight exercises it out for balance, lower your body by sitting back into your hips and lightly engage your core to keep your posture. While keeping your back straight, slowly raise your body back up by pushing through your heel.
2. Chest Press
Chest press exercises are an effective way to enhance strength and build muscle in the chest region of the body. This exercise can be done with free weights or a barbell, making it an effective way to add to any existing workout routine. Using free weights for a free weight chest exercise requires a firm stance, with your feet shoulder-width apart.
Begin by holding two dumbbells, with arms at either side. Engaging abdominal muscles, inhale and press the weights forward, pushing the arms straight up until elbows are near-locked. Slowly exhale and lower the weights back to the starting position.
3. Bent-Over Rows
Bent over rows is a common free-weight exercise that can help to build strength in your upper body. This exercise mainly targets the last, biceps, shoulders, and other postural muscles. It is an excellent compound exercise for developing strength and should be included in any upper-body workout routine.
To do the exercise, begin by standing with your feet hip-width apart and holding a barbell in both hands. Bend your body at the torso, keeping your back and neck straight and stable, so that your upper body is parallel to the floor. Next, lift the barbell towards your chest while keeping your elbows close to your body, and then slowly return the barbell to its starting position.
4. Overhead Presses
Overhead presses are an incredibly effective free-weight exercise that can be added to any workout routine. This challenging lift targets your shoulders and arms but also engages your core and upper back muscles. The overhead press is best performed with a barbell but can be completed with dumbbells or kettlebells as well.
There are two main variations: strict and push press. To perform an overhead press, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, hold the weight using an overhead grip, and press the weight up above your head until your arms are straight. Good form means keeping the bar close to your upper body weight exercise, not arching your lower back, and bringing the weight completely overhead.
5. Deadlifts and Pullups
Deadlifts and pullups are two of the most popular free-weight exercises to incorporate into a workout routine. Deadlifts are an exercise that targets the muscles in your back, glutes, and legs. They involve picking up a weight, such as a barbell from the ground and lifting it to chest level.
Pullups involve holding onto a pullup bar and lifting your body until your chin is above the bar. These exercises are great for targeting specific muscle groups and are also beneficial for overall strength development. Both exercises require a significant amount of strength, but with regular practice, we can build the strength necessary to perform each exercise.
Free Weight Exercises Workout Today and See the Benefits
Free weight exercises can be a great addition to any workout routine because they allow you to customize your workout to meet your specific goals. This versatility, combined with the reliance on your own body versus a machine, can result in better muscle engagement and longer-term strength gains. So why wait? Add free weight exercises to your workout today and see the benefits firsthand!
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