Five Low Impact Body Weight Exercises for Improved Strength

Thinking of one’s health, consistent physical activity is an important thing one can do. Being active has many wonderful benefits including improved brain health, weight management, and improved ability to do everyday activities.  For some, however, vigorous movement just can’t be done. Instead of restricting fitness goals, there are other options to try.  One option is low impact body weight exercises for improved strength.

There are several effective low impact body weight workouts. Low impact exercises are a productive way to build muscle, endurance, and fitness without being too vigorous.  These exercises can focus on targeting specific muscle groups to help build and tone your body. 

Low Impact Body Weight Exercises

Even with a low impact plan, it is important to check with your doctor and warm up prior to beginning any exercise.  Here are a few low impact body weight exercises which can be included to repetitive sets.

  • Walkouts
    • Stand, bend at hips, put hands on floor, shoulder-width apart.
    • Walk hands forward until body is in plank position
    • Walk hands back on floor to feet, return to standing
  • Cross body toe touch
    • Stand with arms in air past shoulder width, legs are also spread past shoulders
    • Bend at waist rotate left arm to right toe
    • Return to standing position
    • Repeat on other side
  • Shoulder tap plank
    • Plank position on hands with hands and feet about shoulder width apart
    • Lift one hand off the ground and tap the opposite shoulder, return to starting position
    • Repeat on other side
    • (This can also be performed on knees instead of feet)
  • Forward Lunges
    • Stand with legs shoulder width apart, hands on hips
    • Take large step forward and lower body until front and back legs are at a 90-degree angle
    • Push off front foot to raise back up to standing position
    • Repeat on other side
  • Lying scissor kicks
    • Lie on back with arms flat on mat and legs extended out
    • Engage core by tucking pelvis into mat (put hands under butt to assist)
    • Lift both legs off ground about 8-10 inches, lower one leg toward the floor while lifting the other leg up to start the “scissoring” motion
    • Scissor in an up and down motion

Low Impact Cardio

In addition to low impact body weight exercise, there are several ways to do low impact cardio. A 20-minute low impact workout is every effective.  How would one know if they are doing low or higher impact?  Everyone reacts differently to exercise.  A rule of thumb is to check your breathing.  With less vigorous activity one can talk but maybe not sing.  With more vigorous activity one can say a few words but not carry on a conversation.  Here are 5 activities that might be less vigorous. 

  • Swimming
  • Walking
  • Rowing
  • Biking or spinning
  • Skating

Beneficial exercises are not all strenuous exercise. Let’s talk to develop a plan that meets your individual needs.  Remember the option of low impact body weight exercises for improved strength.

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