Underrated Exercises Any Fitness Beginner Can do ...

By Eliza

Trainers really know their stuff and the ones at DailyBurn.com are no exception. That's why we're so happy they shared these fantastic moves with us. These are things you may have overlooked until now. They may seem simple, but the impact is huge. Add any of these moves to your routine and you should be feeling it big time the next day. That's how you know it's working. In just a few weeks, you'll start getting loads of compliments on your fab new silhouette. That's something we can all get excited about!

1 The Superman

Targets: Hamstrings, abs, lower and upper back muscle
Superheroes might have a reputation for abs of steel, but the superman exercise is all about the back. And that’s a good thing, according to Jonathan Angelilli, fitness trainer and founder of TrainDeep, a holistic fitness system. “[Supermans] are way more important than crunches,” he says, because the exercise does a better job of promoting good posture and strengthening the muscles in your back.

2 The Brisk Walk

Targets: Cardio and endurance
Better health is literally just a few steps away. “Walking has many of the same health benefits as running, such as reduced risk of hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes and improved cardiovascular health,” says Jen Sinkler, an author, personal trainer, former elite athlete and founder of Lift Weights Faster. A brisk walk won’t put undue stress on your body like running might, but taking some deep breaths while walking can help you “quiet a busy brain,” says Sinkler. “That’s a win for everyone, from newbie exerciser to veteran.”

3 The Lateral Band Walk-out

Targets: Glutes
Lateral band walks are about to become your glute go-to. “The exercise strengthens and targets the gluteus medius, or side of your butt, and does so without bulking. Instead, it helps chisel and tighten the booty and legs,” says Andrea Speir, trainer for Daily Burn Pilates. Best of all, you won’t need to spend hours hobbling around like a penguin to get results. Spier says you’ll feel the burn instantly once you start side stepping around. Keep it up for three sets of 10 reps and you’ll have a solid addition to any dynamic warm-up or lower-body routine.

4 The Dead Bug

Targets: Core
No, you won’t harm any insects during this exercise. The Dead Bug is a core exercise performed on your back, where you want to engage your abs to resist extending your lumbar spine (or, arching your back) as you lower your legs to the floor. Translation: You’re keeping your back against the floor while raising and lowering your legs and arms. “There are enough variations that can challenge anyone ranging from a beginner to the most advanced trainee, yet very few people use it,” says Hunter Cook, a California-based trainer. He likes that it teaches athletes how to brace properly, a skill important for protecting the spine during heavy squats and deadlifts.

5 The Rower

Targets: Quads, glutes, arms and back
Row, row, row your way fit. Anja Garcia, trainer for Daily Burn’s Inferno program, says working out on a rowing machine has helped take her athleticism to the next level. “You can change the intensity of the exercise by playing with your stroke rate, adding in sprints to really target cardio or keeping a steady cadence to work on strength and power,” she says.

6 The Sumo Squat with Drag

Targets: Glutes, quads and inner thighs
Level up your bodyweight squats, no equipment necessary. By adding a “drag” at the end of a sumo squat, you’ll challenge your inner thighs, says Larysa Didio, a celebrity trainer and fitness writer. “It’s really hard to target the inner thighs while standing and this exercise successfully does it,” she says. So, skip those seated adduction machines and drop it like a squat, stat.

7 The Stairs

Targets: Glutes, hamstring, calves and core
Waiting for a treadmill can get old, fast. So why not ditch the gym and explore a new part of town by heading to an outdoor stairwell or stadium for your next cardio fix? By running or walking up and down stairs, you’ll rev your heart rate, improve coordination and develop lower body strength. “There’s so much variety in how you can use [stairs] and they’re everywhere!” says Dyan Tsiumis, instructor at The Fhitting Room in New York City, who’s been hitting the steps to help get in shape for her first figure competition.

8 The Plyo Workout

Targets: Cardio and strength training
Harder, better, faster, stronger aren’t just song lyrics — they’re also benefits of plyometric training. “It’s all about efficiency,” says Leanne Shear, founder and head trainer at Uplift Studio in New York City. By incorporating jump squats, broad jumps or other plyo moves into your fitness routine, you’ll fire up muscle groups that you wouldn’t ordinarily work moving in just one plane of motion. Plus, developing explosive power that will make you a better all-around athlete? Priceless.

9 The Single-Leg Deadlift

Targets: Core, glutes and hamstrings
While regular deadlifts are great for building strength, balancing on just one leg means your core has to stay engaged throughout the movement. Kira Stokes, an instructor at BFX Studio in New York City, is all about firing up the posterior chain with single-leg deadlifts. “Added bonus: This is a fantastic exercise for ankle and knee rehab,” says Stokes, since the movement can help strengthen and stabilize your joints. And best of all, she notes that the single-leg deadlift is a “no-excuse exercise,” meaning you can do it anytime with just your own bodyweight.

10 The Russian Kettlebell Swing

Targets: Glutes, lower back, hamstrings, shoulders and legs
Want to benefit from kettlebell training but not sure where to start? Let us introduce you to the Russian kettlebell swing. “It has a low learning curve,” says Kellie Davs, celebrity trainer and co-founder of GetGlutes.com. “[It’s] a full-body workout wrapped into a single exercise,” she says, noting it strengthens your posterior chain while also revving your heart rate and testing your endurance.

11 The Track Workout

Targets: Cardio and endurance
You don’t have to slog through miles on the treadmill. You can mix up a run in many ways — sprint drills, distance runs and nature hikes — so it’s appropriate for all levels and fitness goals. “Running never ceases to amaze and challenge me,” says Justin Rubin, trainer for Daily Burn’s True Beginner program. Lace up your sneakers and you’ll likely live longer than more sedentary people! Baby, you were born to run.

12 The Prowler Drive

Targets: Legs, core, back, hip extension
Push it, push it real good. The Prowler is that sled-like piece of equipment you’ve seen people shoving around gyms or CrossFit boxes. But it’s not just for bros chasing gains. Anyone can use the Prowler since there’s a quick learning curve, says Rob Sulaver, founder and CEO of Bandana Training. Unlike barbells, there’s no risk of falling weight once you run out of steam — push until you can’t push any more and the Prowler will simply come to a halt.

13 The Weighted Back Squat

Targets: Glutes, hamstrings, quads, calves, core, lower back and shoulders
Ladies and gentlemen of the gym, back squats are back. “A lot of women avoid this exercise in fear of growing their thighs and men skip it to focus on more vanity body parts like their chest and arms,” says Brett Hoebel, celebrity trainer and author of The 20-Minute Body. The truth is, this full-body move can torch calories during and after your workout. At the same time, it helps you develop better mobility — which can lead to better performance for other workouts.

14 The Deadlift

Targets: Glutes, hamstrings, quads and lower back
Think only advanced lifters can do deadlifts? Think again. “Men, women, young and old can all benefit from this move,” says Ben Booker, trainer for Daily Burn’s LTF Program. The multi-joint exercise works your upper and lower body. Plus it’s one of the safest lifts you can perform, because you simply drop the weight if you can’t complete the lift. Once you learn how to hinge properly at the hips, you’ll develop strength that can carry over for picking up heavy groceries or moving furniture.

15 The Thruster

Targets: Quads, glutes, hamstrings, abs, shoulders, upper back, triceps
Want more bang for your buck with a barbell in hand? You get two-for-one with the thruster, which combines a front squat with a push press. “This full-body movement is very metabolically demanding and really gets the heart rate up,” says Eric Salvador, head instructor at The Fhitting Room in NYC. “The power that you generate from your legs in the squat propels the weight overhead where your abdominals, shoulders, upper back and triceps take over,” he says. This multi-joint movement isn’t for the faint of heart, though. “The thruster will literally floor you,” says Salvador, who became a believer in the exercise during “Fran,” a notoriously tough Cross Fit workout.

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