Building a solid cardio base to prepare for martial arts is a must. But when we say “daily cardio exercise,” we don’t necessarily mean hopping on the treadmill or the elliptical and boring yourself as you log 20 minutes of cardio.
The good news is that you can do cardio exercises using only your bodyweight and in the comfort of your own home. The bonus of doing these moves? Your neighbors won’t find it annoying.
Here are some bodyweight exercises you can do to build up your cardio level:
Stand with your feet hip-width apart and keep your core tight. Bend from the waist, place your hands on the ground and walk your hands forward while keeping your legs straight. When you arrive in a high plank, quickly walk your hands back towards your feet, and stand.
Mountain Climber Twist
From a high plank position, run the left knee in toward the right elbow, then the right knee in toward the left elbow. Continue to alternate as quickly as possible without hiking your hips up.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart and run in place by pulling the right knee up toward your chest, then the left knee up toward your chest. Continue to alternate as quickly as possible.
From a high plank position, jump your feet apart then jump them back together. Repeat as quickly as possible while trying to maintain level hips.
Run in place while kicking your heels toward your glutes. Swing arms at your side or allow them to rest against your butt so that your heels can kick the palms. Make sure the movement is coming from your hamstrings.
From a high plank position, with core engaged, shift back and pike your hips as you lift your right hand to tap the left shin (or ankle if you’re extra flexible). Return to high plank position and repeat on the other side. Move through the exercise as quickly as possible while maintaining good form.
The classic cardio move is a great way to warm up or do active rest between more difficult moves. Start with your feet together, hands at your sides. Make sure to always keep your core engaged. Jump with your legs apart and bring your arms overhead, clapping at the top. Keep the knees bent as you jump your feet back together and bring your arms down. Repeat as quickly as possible.
Do you incorporate any of these exercises into your existing regimen? Are there any others you can share?