15 minutes, no equipment, and an upper body workout to tone and define arm muscle

You don't need weights to develop strength across in your upper body, you can just use these seven bodyweight moves

Woman stretches out the muscles in her arm
(Image credit: Getty)

While weights and other gym equipment are helpful for increasing muscle hypertrophy in your upper body, you can still tone and develop muscle definition in your arms by completing bodyweight exercises. This no-equipment arms workout only takes fifteen minutes to do, so it's perfect for fitting into a busy schedule or adding to the end of another short workout.

Many of the best workouts for arms just rely on body weight to tone and strengthen important muscles like the biceps and triceps. It's worthwhile adding arm sessions into your workout regime as this muscle area is what helps us lift and carry things as well as move and use our hands. 

The stronger our upper body is, the more independent we can be when we age and our bodies become frailer—this is just one of the benefits of exercise over 50. If this is something you'd like to work on then spare fifteen minutes to try Heather Robertson's (opens in new tab) fifteen-minute arm workout.

Robertson is a certified personal trainer best known for posting workout videos to help people to stay fit and strong at home using minimal equipment. In this particular upper body routine, you will just be using your body weight for the exercises, which she demonstrates herself throughout the workout.

For each move, you will work for 30 seconds, take a 10-second break, then continue onto the next move. It consists of two rounds and although it's just a short session, you should make sure to stay well hydrated with one of the best water bottles by your side.

Heather Robertson's 15-Minute No-Equipment Arms Workout

The clue is in the name for bodyweight exercises; they are movements that only use your weight as the resistance. You don't need to move on to using weights to continue to increase your results, you can just reduce your rest times in between sets. This arm workout includes short ten-second rest periods, meaning your muscles are going to feel very challenged.

If you want to give Robertson's routine a go, we've listed all the exercises you need below.

Heather Robertson's Seven-Move Upper-Body Workout

  • Pike push-up combo
  • Laying tricep press (R)
  • Laying tricep press (L)
  • Prayer pulses
  • Walking plank + tap
  • Super V-squeeze
  • Cross punch combo

Regular exercise in the form of bodyweight workouts like the one above will play a key role in increasing muscle definition. But no matter how hard you train you won't notice significant definition if you're still carrying an excess layer of body fat. 

So if this is something you want to work on, it's worthwhile reducing your intake of simple carbohydrates and upping your consumption of protein, to help lower body fat and gain muscle definition. Some of the best protein powders for weight loss are really handy when you struggle to incorporate enough protein into your daily meals.

Once you've conquered bodyweight workouts, you may fancy adding one of the best kettlebells to your training as you can lose weight by lifting weight. It's a great way to decrease body fat and increase muscle mass at the same time.

However, if you prefer to avoid weight training, practicing HIIT workouts alongside your bodyweight resistance sessions can really help boost fat loss. High-Intensity Interval Training is arguably the most effective way to burn fat as research (opens in new tab) shows it improves insulin sensitivity and this is what assists in boosting fat loss. Why not give this HIIT workout for fat loss a shot?

Jessica Downey
Staff Writer

Jessica is Staff Writer at Fit&Well. Her career in journalism began in local news and she holds a Masters in journalism. Jessica has previously written for Runners World, penning news and features on fitness, sportswear and nutrition. 


When she isn't writing up news and features for Fit&Well covering topics ranging from muscle building, to yoga, to female health and so on, she will be outdoors somewhere, testing out the latest fitness equipment and accessories to help others find top products for their own fitness journeys. Her testing pairs up nicely with her love for running. She recently branched out to running 10Ks and is trying to improve her time before moving on to larger races. Jessica also enjoys building on her strength in the gym and is a believer in health and wellness beginning in the kitchen. She shares all of this on her running Instagram account @jessrunshere which she uses for accountability and for connecting with like-minded fitness lovers.