How Can You Do Effective Cardio Exercise At Home?

Effective cardio exercise doesn’t have to involve monotonous bouts of jogging, cycling and rowing. It doesn’t require expensive pieces of equipment and it needn’t consume hours of your life. Using just your own bodyweight and the principles of high intensity interval training (HIIT) you can perform extremely effective and time-efficient cardio exercise at home. In the time it would have taken to get to the gym you can be done with your workout and getting on with your day.

Home Cardio Blueprint

  1. Choose a selection of bodyweight exercises which use multiple muscle groups and can be performed quickly, smoothly and safely with a high degree of effort

  2. Choose how long you will perform each exercise for. The longer you push each exercise the harder the cardio workout becomes.

  3. Choose how long you will rest between each round of exercise. The shorter your rest, the harder the cardio workout becomes.

  4. Choose how many rounds you will perform. More is not necessarily better. Increasing intensity (longer intervals and shorter rests) trumps increasing duration.

SAMPLE Home Cardio Exercises

Bear crawls are a fun movement which challenge your arms, legs and coordination whilst getting the heart racing. Don’t worry if you are limited on space, simply shuttle forwards and backwards. Start on all fours. You should be balanced on your hands and toes with your knees just off the floor. Begin the movement by moving your left arm and right leg forwards, plant and then repeat with the opposite arm and leg. Throughout the exercise keep your back flat and avoid twisting.

Ginga is a capoeira move which tests your balance and coordination whilst gently raising your heart rate without overly taxing any one muscle group. It’s like a low impact version of jogging on the spot and makes a great active recovery compliment to more intense interval exercise.

Sprinters will get your heart racing when performed at a high intensity/speed. The exercise involves rapidly driving your legs back and forth whilst in a classic push up position.

This classic is great for revving up the heart rate and promotes good spring in the lower body. Start in the standing position. Jump your feet out to the side. Simultaneously raise your arms laterally. As soon as you land spring back to the starting position. Aim to move quickly and quietly.

The sit through is a versatile circuit exercise which incorporates a number of elements including balance, rotation, mobility and strength. Begin the exercise on all fours with a flat spine. Hands underneath shoulders, knees underneath hips. Lift your left hand off the ground and rotate your right leg through and under your body.Finish up at 90 degrees to your starting position with your right leg fully extended out in front of your body whilst balancing on your right hand and left foot. Smoothly transition back to the start position before immediately switching to the other side.

Sample Home Cardio Workout

  • Bear Crawls x 60 seconds

  • Rest x 30 seconds

  • Ginga x 60 seconds

  • Rest x 30 seconds

  • Sprinters x 60 seconds

  • Rest x 30 seconds

Repeat this sequence for a total of 3 rounds then give yourself a big high five.