With spring just over a week away, the weather will soon be getting warmer and sunnier which means sundresses, t-shirts and singlets are about to come out of hiding! Here’s a quick workout to help tone your arms for spring and summer; do 12-15 reps of each.
Get into push up position with palms flat on floor in line with your shoulders and elbows (think ‘goal post’ arms! Your arms and chest should be making a rectangle with the floor when your elbows are bent).
Choose whether you are going to go on your toes or knees. Your body should create a straight line between your shoulders and whatever part of your legs are touching the ground. Pull your tummy in tight and be careful not to sag into it otherwise you may injure your back. Exhale as you push, inhale as you lower yourself down. You can always start on your toes and drop to your knees without stopping if you need to.
Sit right on the edge of a bench or chair, hands on the edge of the seat by your sides, fingers facing forwards and feet spaced about hip-width apart in front of you. Drop your butt off the edge of the seat, hinging at the elbows until they reach 90 degrees, then squeeze your arms and straighten them back up again to lift your body.
If these are too difficult, take a seat on the ground, position your fingers forward by the sides of your butt as if you were on the edge of the chair as in the ‘full’ triceps dips, then brace your core and allow yourself to drop backwards from the hips, using your arms to push back up (straighten them out).
Grab a workout towel and hook it around a vertical pole like a lamppost or a tree; gripping each end of the towel, lean back with core braced and arms active but extended and pull yourself in towards the pole then slowly release back out. Feel for the squeeze between your shoulder blades at the back as you ‘row’.
BONUS: Do 12-15 reps of the towel row pulling your elbows out wide, level with your shoulders as you come in. Then do another 12-15 reps with your elbows in brushing close to your ribs as you pull (palms facing in toward each other). These two types of rows will work more muscle fibres in your back and arms than just doing one type.
Grab two 2-3kg dumbbells (or if you have no dumbbells, use two filled bottles of water or tins of food), hold them up just in front of your shoulders with palms facing forwards. Keeping your shoulders rolled back and down, press both dumbells upward evenly towards the ceiling in a rainbow-like arc until they almost touch in the middle above your head, then return back to the starting position.
Using the same dumbbells, stand tall with shoulders rolled back and down. Arms by your sides with palms facing forward. Curl the dumbbells up, bending the elbows until your hands are level with your shoulders, then slowly release back down.
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