Just because you don't have access to a gym over the Christmas period, that doesn't mean you can't grow your glutes and build a lean lower-body without weights.
We've found a workout that can help you achieve all this without touching a single barbell, dumbbell, kettlebell or exercise machine. The only piece of equipment you might want is one of the best yoga mats (opens in new tab) to provide some extra grip and cushioning, but this isn't a necessity.
The session has been designed by certified fitness trainer Anna Engelschall, better known by her 2.45 million YouTube subscribers as GrowingAnnanas (opens in new tab). It includes a series of leg and glute-oriented exercises, all bookended by a dynamic warm-up and cool-down consisting of static stretches. So you can enjoy a comprehensive lower-body workout in just 35 minutes.
Follow along with Engelschall's video below to try the workout for yourself, and copy her form cues to make sure you're using the right technique for each movement.
Watch GrowingAnnanas leg and glute workout
If you want to build strength and muscle, it's key to create sufficient mechanical tension in your muscles. This means they need to be exposed to a force that is trying to stretch them and lifting weights is one of the most effective ways to achieve this. However, it can be done without the likes of the best adjustable dumbbells (opens in new tab), as Engelschall shows with this workout.
Instead of adding weights, she uses gravity and her bodyweight to provide the necessary resistance. Exercises like elevated squat jumps place your legs under tension by challenging them to control your body as it lowers towards the ground, then provide the necessary power to explosively stand up tall again.
Many of the movements included in this session are compound exercises (opens in new tab). This means they use multiple muscle groups, making the workout extra efficient. There are also many unilateral movements (like explosive split squats) which task you with using one side of your body at a time. This makes the movement more difficult as one leg has to support your body weight rather than the usual two, helping achieve the stimulus needed for muscle-growth.
If you want to give this workout a go, we recommend using it as a daily lower-body workout. You will also want to give your leg muscles the chance to recover afterwards, so for the next 24 hours consider trying an upper-body session like this chest and back workout (opens in new tab), or a lower-intensity activity such as these anti-aging yoga moves (opens in new tab).
Harry Bullmore is a fitness writer covering everything from reviews to features for LiveScience, T3, TechRadar, Fit&Well and more. So, whether you’re looking for a new fitness tracker or wondering how to shave seconds off your 5K PB, chances are he’s written something to help you improve your training.
When not writing, he’s most likely to be found experimenting with a wide variety of training methods in his home gym or trying to exhaust his ever-energetic puppy.
Prior to joining Future, Harry wrote health and fitness product reviews for publications including Men’s Health, Women’s Health and Runner’s World. Before this, he spent three years as a news reporter with work in more than 70 national and regional newspapers.
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