The next time you want to get in a workout, just lie down. Yes, you read that correctly: Take it to the mat! Sure, when we think about lying down, we picture rest — not fitness. But did you know that you can get in a great workout while never having to leave the floor?
Lying on the floor relieves pressure from your back, hips, knees and ankles. Taking your workout to the floor can especially come in handy for chest and arm exercises because the ground gives your back and torso extra support.
That's because the floor provides opposition to press your back or torso into it to help you move the weight when it gets heavy. Your lower back will often overcompensate to assist you when you're in a standing position, and lying down prevents this.
How to Do This Workout
Do each exercise below for 3 sets of 8 to 10 reps to build upper-body strength. Thanks to the support and assistance of the floor, this workout is great for all fitness levels.
- Lie on the floor with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Hold a dumbbell at both ends, palms facing in, arms extended towards the ceiling.
- Keeping your core engaged and your arms straight, slowly bring the weight back toward the floor behind your head.
- Extend the weight as far as you can without feeling your core come off the ground.
- Slowly bring the weight back to the starting position. That's 1 rep.
Push your back into the floor to help you bring your arms back to the starting position when the weights start to feel heavy.
Chest Fly to Triceps Extension
- Lie on the floor with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Hold a pair of dumbbells with a neutral grip (palms facing each other) with your arms extended straight up toward the ceiling.
- Keep a slight bend in your arms as you open your arms out and down, squeezing your shoulder blades together. Stop just before your elbows touch the floor.
- Press the weights back up to the starting position.
- Bend your elbows to bring the dumbbells toward your forehead.
- Straighten your arms to return to the starting position. That's 1 rep.
The straighter your arms are when opening into the chest fly, the more you'll activate your chest muscles.
Close-Grip Chest Press
- Lie on the floor with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Hold a pair of dumbbells close together with a neutral grip (palms facing each other). The backs of your arms (triceps) should be flat on the floor.
- Keeping your core engaged and your lower back pressed into the floor, push the weights up toward the ceiling.
- Return to the starting position, making sure your biceps skim the sides of your body as you bring the weights down.. That's 1 rep.
Use the floor as opposition to press the weights above your head as the weights start to feel heavier.
Lying Lateral Raise
- Holding a dumbbell in each hand, lie on your stomach with your legs straight out behind you and arms straight out to your sides.
- With a slight bend in your elbows, lift your arms up until you feel the tension between your shoulder blades. Keep your gaze down to maintain a neutral neck and spine as you lift your arms.
- Lower your arms back down to the ground. That's 1 rep.
Use the lighter set of weights for this exercise.
Superhero to Shoulder Press
- Holding a dumbbell in each hand, lie on your stomach with your legs straight out behind you and arms in a goal post position (elbows bent to 90 degrees).
- Keep your gaze at the ground to maintain a neutral neck and spine as you do this exercise.
- Lift your chest up off of the ground until you feel tension in your lower back.
- Press your arms straight out in front of you.
- Bend your elbows to return your arms to the goal post position.
- Lower your chest back to the floor to return to the starting position. That's 1 rep.
Use the lighter set of dumbbells for this exercise.