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Compound Exercises At Home with Household Items

Compound Exercises At Home

Lifestyle is the way a person lives.  Do you know synonymous terms such as, “home-body,” or “stay-at-home-moms”?  How we live our life is a reflection of our values.  In 2020, a desire for exercise surged as a result from the country’s shutdown.  Therefore, a recent movement began this year called, “at home exercises”, becoming one of the most popular compound exercises to do at home.

Benefits: The Science of Muscles

The compound exercises are movements that utilize multiple muscle groups.  Squats, dead lifts, and presses are main types of these movements.  As a result, large muscles like quadriceps and hamstrings undergo intense resistance damaging the muscle fibers for regeneration that leads to hypertrophy (Kwon, Kravitz, n.d.).  Similar to the larger muscle groups, smaller area muscles such as glutes, calves, deltoids, and latissimus dorsi will experience maximum stress resulting in muscle growth as well.

As different groups of muscles get attention from compound exercises, there are other benefits beside hypertrophy.  Here are a few successful results after performing these exercises a few times a week between 30-45 minutes each:

  • Calories are burned at a greater rate and amount
  • Increases heart rate helping our cardiovascular system
  • Builds muscle strength that helps exercise endurance
Compound Exercises, At Home Exercises
Compound Exercises, Cast-Iron Image by Ernest_Roy from Pixabay

What Household Items to Use

Squats, deadlifts, and presses are some of the best exercises to perform with household items.  First, squats are performed by bending your knees with your hips pushed back while your toes face forward.  Here are some items found in your house that is good to use for this exercise:

  • Cast iron cooking pot* 8-50lbs (fill with canned foods to increase weight)
  • Luggage or suitcase 10-50lbs (fill with bathroom items and shoes)
  • Plastic tote or trash can 10-50lbs (fill with canned foods or small weight items)

Deadlifts are dead weights lifted off the ground to the level of your hips while your torso is perpendicular to the floor with your toes pointed forward or slightly outward.  Performed from a standing position, these types of exercises are easy to perform by using:

  • Different styles of non-electronic sofas or loveseats 50-100lbs
  • Tall trash can that fits the circumference of your arms 50-100lbs (fill with any items to add weight)
  • Mattress or bed frame and mattress 30-50lbs (tuck damp towels in a trash bag underneath the sheet to add more weight)

Presses are performed by pushing a weight centered to your chest while extending your arms from a 90 degree angle upward vertically.  There are two versions- shoulder and chest presses.  To further increase the amount of muscle work, simply combine a squat with a shoulder press.  These are some items you can use to best perform this exercise:

  • Tote, box, backpack, luggage 30lbs-100lbs (fill with additional items to add weight)
  • Chair or small bed side furniture piece 50lbs-100lbs
  • Cast iron pot 8-50lbs (fill with canned foods to add weight)

Summary

Staying home for work, school, or in between traveling can give you cabin fever though it may be contagious, but it’s a good thing.  Finding a way to keep your body healthy during the most outrageous situations is a testament to your perseverance.  It’s never too late to get started!

Author:  Jamie Moore (senior at Sam Houston State University Pre-Nursing)

References

Kwon, Kravitz, Y. K. L. K. (n.d.). How Do Muscles Grow?- The University of New Mexico. How Do Muscles Grow? Retrieved December 1, 2020, from https://www.unm.edu/%7Elkravitz/Article%20folder/musclesgrowLK.html

 

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