5 Advanced Bodyweight Moves to Learn While Traveling
There are no barbells to distract you on the road. Teach yourself one of these 5 bodyweight moves while traveling and unlock your true athletic potential.
Being on the road is a great time to teach yourself a few new bodyweight moves to add to your workouts.
Most travel workouts consist of the basics like push-ups, squats and burpees.
Once you're really good at these, it's time to add some variation and try some advanced moves.
A hotel room or beach are great places to spend some time learning these five advanced bodyweight exercises.
You may have seen people doing handstand push-ups in the gym or on the Crossfit Games. It's not easy and it requires some serious time practicing before being able to master but it's worth the time and effort.
If you're traveling, a few minutes in your hotel room is a great opportunity to work on it.
It's best to approach this on two fronts: developing your shoulder strength and getting comfortable kicking into a handstand against a wall. For the first part, being good at push-ups is a great foundation. Once you've mastered the push-up, a great variation to prepare for handstand push-ups is the pike push-up. Elevate your feet on a chair or table and form an upside-down V with your body. Lower yourself down and press back up like you would in a normal push-up but with more focus on the shoulders.
To kick into a handstand against the wall, place your hands roughly one foot from the wall and slightly wider than shoulder width apart. Drive your back leg over your head as you press off the ground with your front leg. Focus initially on getting comfortable in the handstand. Practice by holding your handstand against the wall for 5-10 seconds. Once you're comfortable with this, begin practicing your negatives by lowering yourself down until the top of your head touches the ground. Press yourself back up using your shoulders.
The L-Sit is a fantastic demonstration of core strength and stability. It's simple in concept but deceptively brutal in execution. Most gymnasts perform the L-Sit on a pair of parallettes but you will likely not have access to these while traveling. That's not an issue though as the L-Sit is just as effective when done on the floor.
Sit on the floor with your hands under your shoulders and fingers facing forward. Push down into the floor with your hands and lift your butt and feet off the floor. Hold this position for 5-10 seconds.
I've talked about the one-arm push-up before because it's one of the best measurements of upper body strength and stability. You should already be able to do at least 20 push-ups with good form and no stopping before attempting the one-arm push-up. Following a similar progression to the one I used, add close-grip push-ups and diamond push-ups to your workouts. Once you're feeling comfortable with those, work on your one-arm push-ups from your knees at first and then progress to the normal position. Focus on the lowering portion of the exercise and use this to develop your strength and mechanics.
The pistol squat might be the coolest looking exercise around right now. It's a head turner for good reason. Not only does it require incredible lower body strength but it keeps you honest to your mobility and balance. There's no way around it. To properly master the pistol squat, you have to have all three components (strength, mobility, balance) covered.
Start preparing for pistols by doing rear-foot elevated split squats to develop your lower body strength and correct any muscle imbalances. When you're ready to attempt the pistol squat, remember the fundamentals:
- Lower yourself slowly and use your hands to help maintain your balance.
- Sit back and down with your weight on your heel.
- Keep your chest up.
- Squeeze your glutes when coming back up.
You might be less familiar with the planche than you are with the other four movements. The planche has flown under the radar for awhile but it is getting more and more attention lately. It's a skilled movement most often used by gymnasts. The body is held parallel to the ground with arms held locked out (similar to the up position in a push-up). You must have incredible strength and balance to properly execute the planche. To develop this level of strength and balance, be sure to have your foundation in place (previous bodyweight training consisting of push-ups, dips, etc) and then follow the below progression.
These bodyweight movements are advanced and require you to have already developed a solid strength and stability foundation. You must be patient and consistent as you work towards mastering them. The benefits are worth it.
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