11 Best Floor Exercises for Women To Lose Weight
When it comes to weight loss workouts, there's a common misconception that you need fancy gym equipment, high-intensity exercises, and long daily runs in order to achieve results. Sounds exhausting, right? Fortunately, we're here to offer a simpler solution: floor exercises. It may seem too good to be true, but your living room rug or bedroom carpet can serve as the platform for your fitness transformation. We're here today with 11 of the best floor exercises for women to lose weight.
For women who are seeking a balanced workout that combines toning, flexibility, and fat burning, these exercises promise a refreshing change from the usual gym routines. They're adaptable, versatile, and can be seamlessly integrated into any schedule, whether it's a quick morning energy boost or an evening wind-down session.
We chatted with Nadia Murdock, CPT, a certified fitness instructor at Garage Gym Reviews, who delivers 11 outstanding floor exercises every woman should consider incorporating into her weight loss regimen. "Floor exercises are a great way to mix up your routine and a great option if you're experiencing an injury like knee pain," says Murdock. "Without the proper lifestyle practices, like nutrition, stress management, and sleep, you won't be able to achieve your weight loss goals."
Read on for Murdock's breakdown of the 11 best floor exercises for women to lose weight. Then, don't miss these 8 Standing Exercises to Sculpt & Shape Your Body After 30.
1. Bicycle Crunches
This dynamic exercise engages upper and lower abs, ensuring a comprehensive core workout. "This move helps to strengthen your core by building a stronger center so you can perform other exercises successfully," explains Murdock.
Start by lying down flat on your back. Bring your knees into a table position, place your hands behind your head, and lift your head (think about keeping your chin off your chest). If you can, peel your shoulder blades off the floor as well. Keep your elbows back as you extend your right leg. While keeping your left leg bent toward your chest, bring the opposite side of your body to reach for the left. Reverse and repeat this action on the other side for one rotation. Perform this movement for three sets of 30 to 45 seconds with one-minute rest between sets.
2. Squeeze Crab Pushups
For those unfamiliar, squeeze crab pushups might sound like a dance move, but they're a stellar floor exercise that boosts strength and stability. Murdock says, "This move works your chest, triceps, and inner thighs."
Place a ball or rubber between your knees in a kneeling pushup position. Squeeze the ball with your inner thighs and tighten your core muscles. Place your hands shoulder-width apart and keep your arms straight. Bend your arms and lower your chest to the ground, then return to start. Aim for three to four sets of 12 reps.
3. Side Leg Raises
"This exercise helps to strengthen your outer thighs, glutes, and hips," states Murdock.
Begin lying down on your side with your legs and hips stacked. Make sure you aren't leaning forward or back. Keep your toes pointed, and slowly lift the top leg. Bring your leg back down for the heels to click, and immediately bring the top leg back up again. Repeat for three rounds of 30 to 45 seconds per side.
4. Tipping Frogs
Tipping frogs offer a blend of balance, flexibility, and core strength. This exercise ignites the glutes, quads, and core by starting in a deep squat and then tipping forward to touch the ground.
"While standing in a squat position, place your hands in front of you. Slowly tip forward onto your hands while on the balls of your feet. Gently push back to complete one rep and remain in a squat position," instructs Murdock. Perform three sets of eight to 10 reps.
5. Glute Bridges
A staple in many routines, glute bridges are all about elevating and toning the backside. "This move works your glutes, arms, and shoulders," says Murdock.
Loop a short band just above your knees, and lie on your back. Bend your knees, and keep them roughly eight inches apart with your feet together. Squeeze your glute muscles and elevate your hips off the ground. You can also simultaneously hold a towel just over your chest with your hands shoulder-width apart. Press the towel straight up and attempt to pull the towel apart with straight arms. Hold for three to five seconds, then return your hips and arms to the starting position. Aim for four sets of 12 reps.
6. Sideways Floor Pushups
Sideways floor pushups bring a fresh twist on traditional pushups.
"Start by lying on the floor with your top leg diagonally placed from your hip with the bottom leg bent," says Murdock. "Wrap your arm on the floor around your ribcage as though you're hugging yourself. With the other arm, place the palm of your hand in front of you on the floor. Slowly push your body up and down without locking your elbows. Keep your feet on the ground to maintain correct form." Perform two sets of 25 reps per arm.
7. Butt Blasters
With a name as catchy as the results they deliver, butt blasters are a go-to exercise for firmer, rounder glutes.
Start on all fours with the end of a resistance band in each hand. Place the arch of your foot in the loop of the band while keeping your foot flexed. Make sure to keep the band tight for an extra challenge. Push your foot back behind you at hip height. Bend your knee and pull it back in toward your chest. Do four sets of 12 to 15 reps per side.
8. Staggered Pushups
"With this exercise, you're strengthening multiple muscle groups," explains Murdock. "But, more importantly, it will help you maintain strength for everyday tasks."
Start by getting into a traditional pushup position with one hand on a step, medicine ball, or kettlebell to create an uneven dynamic. Place one hand on the floor and the other on the elevated surface. Make sure your wrist, elbow, and shoulder are aligned. Perform a traditional pushup utilizing the uneven surface, lowering your body to the ground and back up. Aim for four sets of 10 reps.
9. Russian Twists
Sitting on the floor and twisting might sound easy, but Russian twists are the ultimate core challenger. "This ab workout is great for targeting the obliques," says Murdock.
Sit with your feet firmly planted flat on the ground. Lean back about 45 degrees to where you can feel your abs engaging. Slowly twist your body to the right with your arms straight out in front of you and your fingers laced together. Return to the starting position, and turn to the left side. This completes one rotation. Do three sets of 15 to 20 reps per side.
10. Compound Crunches
Combining the elements of a classic crunch with added leg movement, compound crunches are an effective fat-loss exercise. "This move works multiple muscles, focusing mainly on the rectus abdominis," says Murdock.
To start, lie on your back with your hands behind your head. Keep your elbows out to the side and your legs straight on the floor. As you crunch in toward the center of your body, bring your knees toward your chest. Lower your head and shoulder blades as you slowly release, bringing your legs back to the ground. Perform two sets of 20 to 25 reps.
11. Jackknife Crisscross Crunches
Jackknife crisscross crunches fuse intensity and precision for a highly effective fat-loss floor exercise.
"Lie on the floor in a supine (facing upwards) position. Slowly bring your hand to the tip of the opposite toe while performing a controlled crunch upwards. Make sure to keep both your arms and legs straight. Mimic the same action on the opposite side to complete one rep," says Murdock. Aim for three sets of 20 reps.