Not all of us have the luxury of having a fully stocked home gym. Fortunately, if you want to get in shape without going to the gym but have no equipment to get started, there’s no need to stress. You likely already have these 11 household objects lying around and they’re perfect for simple and effective at-home workouts!
What household items can be used to exercise?
1. Dining room chair
A dining room or a metal folding chair is an excellent tool for at-home workouts featuring tricep dips. First, position the chair away from potential hazards, like the side of the table. To get in position, sit on the edge of the chair and grip the edges of the sides with your hands. Stretch your legs out straight and slowly raise your body up, lower it back down, and bring it back up to the starting position to feel your triceps burn.
2. Soup cans
The soup cans tucked away in the back of your pantry are the perfect light weights to improve your arm and chest strength. They’re ideal for low-weight and repetitive exercises because they weigh about 1.5 pounds, allowing you to add a little bit of a challenge to certain exercise moves, like biceps curls, overhead triceps extensions, and the standing or lying chest fly. Just make sure you hold those cans tightly as you slowly extend your arms up or out and return to the starting position.
3. A backpack
Use a backpack filled with water bottles or soup cans to add some weight to your at-home workouts. An excellent solution for bodyweight moves like squats, stair running, or lunges, this is a simple way to increase the intensity of your workout without using any advanced equipment at the gym. Plus, most people have a backpack and soup cans or water bottles lying around the house at any point. You can also carry a backpack full of heavy books, cans, or bottles outside to increase the intensity of your walks around the neighborhood and burn more calories.
4. Laundry detergent bottles
Don’t have a kettlebell? No problem. Just grab a full bottle of detergent from your laundry room and you’re good to go. Use it to perform a kettlebell swing and squeeze your glutes at the top of each swing before returning to the starting position.
5. A full laundry basket
You had to know all that dirty laundry would eventually come in handy one day. Well, today’s the day! Make sure your basket is filled to the brim, and set it down in front of your feet. Then, work your hamstrings, glutes, hips, and back with a few sets of quick laundry basket deadlifts. You might even be motivated to stick that laundry in the washing machine when you’re done.
6. A door frame
Seal your burpees with a jump and a tap at the top of your door frame for a full and challenging movement. Or, use your doorframe as an anchor for resistance band at-home workouts. Many resistance band sets come with a door anchor, making them easy to use at home. To use your door as a tool, thread your resistance band through the loop and close the door. This will wedge the anchor into the doorframe at the desired height and angle for your exercise. Now you’re ready to complete all kinds of resistance band exercises, including a chest press, standing row, high-low woodchop, chest fly, kneeling row, and much more.
7. Paper or disposable plastic plates
Using sliders or gliding discs for at-home workouts can help you engage your core to strengthen it and improve your overall balance. However, a few paper plates will get the job done if you don’t have sliders or even hard floors. Simply use the paper plates in the same way you’d use the sliders to achieve a great workout featuring plank jacks, pikes, mountain climbers, and more. Some people say disposable plastic plates work best on carpets, but if paper plates are all you have, they will do the trick too.
8. A rope
If you don’t own any resistance bands, you can use a rope to achieve the same results without spending a penny. Tie a knot at both ends of the rope and use it to perform squats, inverted or seated rows, lunges, and planks with leg raises.
If you have a set of stairs in your home, you’re in luck. To improve your VO2 max with at-home workouts, walk or run up and back down your stairs several times to get your blood pumping and improve your overall endurance. You can also use your stairs to complete moves like step-ups to reverse lunges, triceps stair dips, mountain climbers, and skater steps. The options are nearly endless.
10. A mop or broom
Grab your broom or mop and use it for mobility work! Start by holding it in front of your hips with a wide grip. Raise the bar over your head, behind you, and down toward your glutes. Raise it back up and over your head to return to the starting position. Alternatively, you can use that broom to work on your back by creating a pull-up bar for your at-home workouts. Just place the broom on top of two chairs and use it as your pull-up bar. Stay safe and avoid hurting yourself by ensuring the chairs are adequately secured to the floor and that they’re not situated too far apart from one another.
11. The wall
If you have a house or an apartment, you have a wall you can use for wall-sits. This exercise is easy to incorporate into any at-home workout and offers plenty of fantastic benefits. Sitting in an invisible chair against your wall will tone and strengthen your legs and core, improve your posture, stamina, and focus, and enhance balance and stability. What’s not to love?
Bonus: Your child
While a human isn’t a “household object,” your little ones may regularly be at home with you. And if you have a baby or young child, they most likely want to be with you (or on you) while you’re exercising anyway. So why not use them as a part of your routine? (Safely, of course.) To do so, securely strap your infant to your body using a Boba wrap or baby carrier and perform bodyweight exercises like weighted squats or lunges. The extra weight will help you feel the burn, and your kiddo will likely enjoy all the movement while they’re along for the ride.
For those who do own a treadmill or a bicycle, try Vingo! The Vingo app is an excellent form of indoor exercise that offers fun, challenging, and social fitness-forward adventures for people of all skill levels. Try running or cycling indoors with Vingo today!